If you like interacting with people and selling a product that is beneficial to everyone, a career as a life insurance sales professional may be for you. Since becoming a life insurance sales professional requires you to go through training and get legally certified--which costs time and money--it is good to know the advantages and disadvantages of such a career before you commit yourself to it.
For most life insurance sales professionals, the daily work schedule is not fixed. As a sales professional, if you decide to take a day or a few hours off, this is usually your decision: you do not have to clear it with a superior. A disadvantage of the sales schedule for someone selling life insurance is the fact that most of your prospective clients only have time to meet with you in the evening or over the weekend, which means that you must work at times when most other people are off.
Life insurance sales professionals typically earn all or most of their income through commission, which means that they get a certain percentage of every sale they make as well as residual income when clients continue to make payments. For this reason, if you sell life insurance, you have the potential to earn much more than you would at an average hourly job. As with any other commission-based job, though, if you fail to perform, you will not be able to earn anything. Even if you do sell a substantial amount of insurance one month, you may not be able to sustain these sales numbers from month to month, and this may result in an unstable level of income.
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The purpose of life insurance is to offset the economic loss associated with the death of a contributing family member or loved one. For this reason, life insurance sales professionals pride themselves on being providers of important protection. Since anyone can die at any time, the value of this protection is real for all prospective clients. Unfortunately though, insurance companies do not simply enroll anyone who wants life insurance. They investigate the health and lifestyle of each applicant. Those who have diseases or lifestyles that mean a higher risk of death may have to pay substantially higher premiums or may not be able to get insurance at all.
The most difficult part about selling life insurance is finding people who are interested in purchasing a policy. To help with this, companies often provide insurance sales forces with leads or with marketing systems that help to generate leads such as sweepstakes, free financial product offers and detailed marketing plans. When such resources come from the insurance company itself, they might not be very high quality. When the marketing plans come from a third party company, sales professionals usually have to pay for them. Additionally, insurance companies often encourage their sales professionals to sell to friends and family, but many prospective sales professionals prefer not to do this because of the social strains that it could cause.