When you leave the Liberty Mutual independent agents program, you learn what it truly means to run an independent agency. Besides making your own business decisions, you are also now in charge of deciding how to grow your business. If you decide you want to offer commercial lines insurance, where can you find training in the insurance industry since you’re not independent? And what type of training do you need to offer commercial lines insurance, anyway?

These are significant questions to have, and this blog will provide answers to both questions. You’ll learn:

  • The training you need for commercial lines insurance such as commercial umbrella policies, commercial general liability, and commercial property insurance policies
  • The training you need to keep up with the insurance industry so that you can be a successful insurance professional
  • How you can attend the training programs you need
  • How joining an insurance cluster can help you get the commercial lines insurance training you want

For the last point, we know that deciding to join an insurance cluster, whether it’s to get access to additional CE credit or access to profit sharing opportunities (or both!), is one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. We’ve put together a free download to help you make this decision. It’s a workbook that will walk you through deciding on whether joining an insurance cluster is right for you. Grab your free workbook here.

Commercial Lines Insurance Training: Offering Additional Coverages as an Agent

Insurance clusters are also known as network aggregators or insurance alliances. They are formal alliances of independent agencies that work together to provide the members with support and various benefits. These insurance clusters accept new agents and experienced agents. SIAA is an example of an insurance cluster that accepts new agents that provides multiple benefits for its members.

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Benefits of Joining an Insurance Aggregator for an Independent Insurance Agent

Commercial lines insurance is an area of insurance that provides different coverage to business entities. For example, a commercial umbrella policy would provide a business with an umbrella policy to cover any overage from their liability, property, or auto policy. A commercial general liability policy provides a liability policy for a business. A commercial property insurance policy provides property insurance for business property, and so on. Commercial lines insurance can be very profitable for the right insurance agents, but you must take the right training program and pass the licensing test first. Let’s look at some of the training required for three of the basics:

  • Commercial general liability insurance requires that you learn about the theory of legal liability, the historical development of general liability coverage forms, and how it has developed since it was created.
  • Commercial property insurance is usually taken after you take a beginner's course. This is often a CE credit. It summarizes the standard commercial property insurance forms along with the basic information and concepts about this type of insurance. You’ll also learn about these forms in more detail.
  • Commercial umbrella liability insurance is ‌a course taken by insurance professionals who have some experience. You’ll learn about the concepts that are exclusive to this type of coverage, including the potential issue with tort claims, which is one reason businesses purchase this type of insurance. It also explains how these policies work and how to spot gaps in insurance coverage.  

Of course, training programs don’t just cover topics such as commercial lines of insurance. You can also learn more about soft skills and pick up your required CE credits. You can work on skills necessary to solve ethical dilemmas, develop a strong understanding of ethical behavior in the insurance industry, or learn more about marketing and customer service.

Keeping up with the Insurance Industry: What Other Types of Training Programs Are Beneficial?

Training programs aren’t just for learning more to keep you successful as an agency owner. They’ll also help you learn more about the insurance industry. When you learn more about the insurance industry, it can translate over into a more successful agency if you take certain ideas that resonate with you and implement them. 

If the opportunity comes up, learn what you can about automation in the workplace. Automation in the insurance industry or within your workplace is nothing to fear. It’s something that can make your life easier. However, it will take all of us (and our workers) having more creativity, critical thinking, and social intelligence to know how to drive them so that we can make them become as productive as possible for our offices. One study in Europe and the US recently showed that between 10% and 55% of underwriting, actuarial, claims, finance, and even operations may be automated to some degree over the next decade. It will pay to know everything you can about automation as it becomes more common.

Attending Training Programs

There was a time when an insurance agent who wanted to attend a training program of any kind had to take time away from the office. That time is long gone. Now, thanks to insurtech, both professional development and CE credits can be completed online. What’s especially nice about many online course opportunities is that even if you sign up for a live course, you’ll get the option to watch the replay at a later time through a link that is sent to you. Busy insurance agents can choose a solely self-paced option.

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Can an Insurance Cluster Help Insurance Agents Get the Commercial Lines Training They Want?

They can, yes. Generally,  the way an insurance cluster operates is by member consensus. If enough members of the insurance cluster are interested in receiving commercial lines training, the cluster will provide it or they will assist in helping the member insurance agents in getting their certifications. So, if you’re interested in a certain commercial lines insurance training program, check with the insurance cluster to determine if they have an online course in place or if they plan to offer it in the future. Insurance clusters are responsible for providing independent insurance agents with resources, so don’t hesitate to ask!

Becomes More Successful in the Insurance Industry!

Now that you have a better understanding of how to gain commercial lines insurance training as an independent agent, we hope you’re ready to become more successful in the insurance industry! We hope you enjoyed this article. Before you move on to read other articles, don’t forget to download your free workbook to help you determine whether joining an insurance cluster is right for you! Download your copy here.