What Insurance Advice Would You Offer a Friend?
If you're in business or just starting out on your own, wouldn't it be great to have friends who could offer advice in every area of your business? Well, I can't make friends for you, however, I do work with many experienced professionals that are willing to share advice with me on insuring your business.
So I put this question to them, "If you had a friend who was starting up a business what insurance advice would you offer them?" and these are some of the answers I received back.
The Big Boss
First I spoke to the man at the top, he's very busy at present and preparing for a much needed short break away, so I guess I didn't catch him at a good time as his advice was "Don't become a civil servant", yes well it's good advice indeed, not exactly what I was looking for, but if you haven't chosen a career yet, that's one to avoid.
The Junior Executive
Next, I spoke to our junior leisure broker, one of the younger members of the team, he's on the ball and has a few years experience and moves mountains when it comes to making sure our leisure clients are correctly covered. His advice was as follows, "Make sure you always check through all your paperwork. Don't scrimp on the cover you need just to save a few pounds, paying a little more opens up more options not only for your business but also means you may get bonus cover added and finally ask as many questions as you can.", some very sound advice there.
The Commercial Manager
I then thought I'd kick it up a notch and heading to our commercial manager's desk. He informed me he didn't have any friends (break out the violins), it's true brokers don't get much love. Anyway, his advice comes from many years of conversations with clients and he tells me, "Clients who have set themselves up as a limited company (probably for taxation, and other benefits as suggested by their accountant), is that they are often unaware that they will need to have employers liability insurance, this is a compulsory form of insurance, like motor insurance. Many clients who are limited companies may not realise that having employers liability is compulsory and failure to carry this cover can result in fines of up to £2500 every day you are not insured https://www.gov.uk/employers-liability-insurance". This is a very important point and it's surprising how few new companies realise this.
The Man of Few Words
FML's own construction team leader and FML's manager had this to say about purchasing insurance, "Buying insurance is like buying tools. Don’t buy cheap because they might let you down when you most need it.", this is very valid especially if it's really cheap too, ask questions, make sure you have the right cover and always get a second opinion if you are unsure.
The Old School Broker
I then went with a guide to the deepest, darkest parts of our premises, hunched over in a shadowy corner at a desk (that looks as if it were carved from the fabric of an 80's office sitcom) is the figure of a well-worn broker, these are elusive creatures with stubby fingers from years of manually typing up insurance documents, a computer to this species of adviser is not much more than a technological paperweight. We step a little close and you can see the ruffling of documents and hear the faint grumbles of dissatisfaction of this new technological age. We are in the old school environment of the old school brokers the one on one type of executive who prefers to seal a deal with a handshake and not the click of a button.
I uttered the question and the response was instant and very intense and to the point, "Always seek professional advice, do not expect the Internet to automatically provide you with the cover you think you need". I had to agree with him, even though I work with technology every day something has been lost and that is the human touch, you can always tell when someone is trying to get a quick sale or is trying to pull the wool over your eyes, a good broker will soon be evident as protecting your business is the first priority so always speak to a professional.
The Young Apprentice
Everyone else seemed a little busy so I thought the last person I'd ask is one of our apprentices. We strongly believe in training the next generation of financial advisers and insurance brokers and they can often have new ways of looking at things, something I always find refreshing and often inspiring. KT or more affectionately known as Tank shared one of her life's mottos "Fear Naught", hmm o.k. think we need to tackle that again, fewer energy drinks this time.
I then explained she was not in the British Tank Regiment and to think of something more insurancy in nature, her response is as follows, "Oooooooo, okay mine would be one of my other life mottos and that’s ‘if you don’t know something, ask, even if you are afraid to sound like an idiot’ everyone has to start off somewhere and who knows we might have the answer you need.", yes someone else did mention it but as you can tell it's an important point. A good broker doesn't judge you on your knowledge and would never take advantage of your lack of knowledge unlike some. After all, if you knew everything about insurance why would you be speaking to a broker?
So there you have some very good pointers if you'd like to hear about insurance from a more specialised perspective let me know your industry and I'll get on it.
In the meantime why not give FML's advisers a call today and discuss your insurance needs?
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