Many times, Workers Comp training can teach someone how to technically perform a task to a level of excellence. One area that still seems to appear more often frustrates insureds, agents, claimants, or any other person involved in the insurance process from obtaining a policy to adjusting a claim.
Many premium auditors have told me this one “untrainable” item makes their job much easier on a daily basis. The same can be said for any insurance industry employee including claims adjusters.
I have written an article on IT – not insurance technology. IT covers what an adjuster needs to excel in their job. IT never comes from Workers Comp training. The part of IT that adjusters must have applies to anyone in insurance.
First impressions do count. This one non-trainable attribute can be seen within moments of meeting someone or talking with them on the phone. Emails can soften how this one asset or liability.
Workers Comp Training vs Built-In Component
The one attribute from an insurance worker that survives and prospers remains to this day – workplace attitude or just plain attitude. I ran into this situation last week. I had contacted an adjuster by phone for an agency client.
I violated my only contact adjusters by email recommendation. I did not have their email address. Most claim systems will give you the adjuster's name, email address, and phone number. This major Workers Comp carrier did not provide even basic info.
The adjuster's attitude was not what I would recommend on a phone call. I usually run into this situation approximately once every 18 months. He said that he could not give out info on the phone as the file was in litigation even after being informed that I was calling for the agent that sold this carrier's policy.
OK, so he was being protective of the file information likely due to HIPPA. The glaring deficiency was not giving out the info. The claims adjuster was well-trained or had many years of experience. This attribute was obvious. However, the attitude was one where I had to report it back to the agent-client.
The renewal is in September. Will this subject come up at renewal? The insured is hopping-mad. We shall see.
Let us look at a different scenario. One of my employer-clients asked me to contact the adjuster on a group of claims for status updates. The adjuster had abruptly left, and the supervisor was handling the claims (not well) temporarily. She said that she would do what she could to find out the statuses and email them to me as she worked on each claim.
I needed them quickly. The attitude that she showed over the phone instilled patience in me. The one key to attitude showed up the next morning. I had three statuses emailed to me. The supervisor started them at 6 AM. Attitude does carry over to work ethic.
No workers comp training would cause the supervisor to handle my call well and to start the next morning at 6 AM to begin forwarding statuses. I sent the employer-client an email explaining the situation. All is well due to customer service and attitude.
Workers Comp Training Can Broach Not Teach Customer Service Attitude
I could cover so many of these situations over the last 30 years. The one saving grace for me when I made mistakes was to keep a positive customer service-based attitude in emails, phone calls, and in-person meetings. Even when I had made a mistake, I was given a pass most of the time.
A great customer service attitude applies to all areas of insurance. Insurance is a service business.
I have seen many Workers Comp training manuals have a section on customer service. I have never seen any training manuals discuss a positive attitude.
This blog post is provided by James Moore, AIC, MBA, ChFC, ARM, and is republished with permission from J&L Risk Management Consultants. Visit the full website
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