The current pandemic situation has thrown us in India, where I live, into a different way of doing business. For every client before the pandemic, we were practicing two things. One was protection and the second was prosperity. Retirement planning was part of prosperity planning.
We always told the clients to first take care of the protection part of their planning, which is insurance for life, health, critical illness, accident/disability and home. Only after a client does the protection part do we move on to the next level, which is retirement planning.
I believe fear motivates clients to buy insurance, or protection, products. With the present scenario, there is a lot of fear with clients. As a result, they have become ready and accepting of the need to have the right or a little higher protection cover.
In the last three months, we have grown our business by 100% as far as protection is concerned. We are focusing on where the need is, where the opportunity is. This is why I’ve already completed my Court of the Table qualification this year.
In our retirement planning, we are advising clients to conserve capital now. Many businesses are facing challenges. Furthermore, a lot of people have lost their jobs, and some have had their salary cut. The first requirement, then, is to survive until things settle down.
We’re advising our clients to pause on retirement planning, save capital, accumulate money, keep cash in hand and only take care of the commitments of renewal premium. We’re telling them not to do any new investments until they have a sufficient contingency to survive for one year. The majority of our clients appreciate that.
Once things settle down, and their income settles down and their salary is stable, we will start investing with them.
Because of this approach, we still have a 98.5% persistency in the renewal premium collection, and we have 100% growth in the protection business.
Chetan Joshi, from Mumbai, India, has been an MDRT member since 2008.