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This month is the third article in a series of four (because there are four primary) personality types of adjusters. The third adjuster personality is the "Master Adjuster".
Ideally, if I owned a restoration company, this would be my choice of adjuster to have as a client.
But, this is the relationship that will be less common and a true gem to be safeguarded and maintained.
As far as the insurance industry goes, he''s put in his time and believes he''s reaped the rewards and status he''s due.
He''s proud of his position and the amount of responsibility he has been given to use his judgment and expertise in the resolution of claims.
He''s a great teacher/mentor.
This is the man/woman that less experienced adjusters will come to for advice and direction.
When he has a trusted vendor, he''ll also give his time to improve the performance of that vendor, knowing it will ultimately enhance his performance.
He''s loyal to his employer.
This is a person who doesn''t feel cheated by the industry or his employer, and is committed to a mutually enhancing relationship.
This person can dress like a Wall Street banker or an attorney. But given today''s relaxed dress codes, you might find him in business casual attire.
However, when the meeting is in the presence of insurers or other clients, he''ll be in full professional wardrobe. (Notice the underscore of the word "war.")
This adjuster doesn''t do "tentative." He''s deliberate and knows where he stands on any given position.
He believes in his professional opinions and is not afraid of clashing with a superior or losing his job over policy interpretation because he''s confident and knows he''s valued by his employer.
In fact, clashing with a superior rarely happens because they''ll pretty much rubber stamp (in approval) anything he says.
This individual has usually taken advantage of every educational opportunity afforded by the insurance industry. Frequently, they will have initials after their names, such as AIC (Associate in Claims), CPCU (Chartered Property & Casualty Underwriter), PCLA (Property Claim Law Associate), or CCLA (Casualty Claim Law Associate).
What this means is that, in addition to whatever collegiate and corporate training they''ve received, they went a step further and pursued additional studies and qualified to take several difficult exams certified by industry organizations such as the Insurance Institute of America and the Society of Claim Law Associates. This is an adjuster who is self motivated to improve and become superior among his/her peers.
So, these adjusters are technically competent — at the top of their game.
They demand top-quality service from vendors, and they don''t mind paying a premium for the highest level of service.
One point that makes this type of adjuster a particularly favored client is that they are loyal to vendors. They know the value of a vendor as a trusted resource and are less likely to throw you "under the bus."
This adjuster is not motivated like the other personalities in our foursome.
They are drawn to a vendor who fulfills their performance expectations.
First, they demand top quality. They expect you (whoever their primary contact is) to be at the top of your game, which means you demonstrate the highest level of competence in your expertise.
Like the "Master Adjuster", you must be confident and professional; this includes your personal demeanor and appearance.
You don''t have to dress like a banker or lawyer, but your dress must fit your service. If you are included in a settlement meeting with this adjuster''s client, you''d be well advised to dress accordingly.
This adjuster demands special attention. You don''t put this person on hold. You and your staff must treat this person like he''s your top client.
It would be particularly impressive that, when this adjuster calls, your staff knows him by name. They should address him as Mr. __________ and not by his first name (unless given permission). Perks and lunch do not motivate this person.
They generally have expense accounts, travel often and engage in business lunches regularly. They are not impressed by a free lunch.
And, although they''ll go to lunch with you, they are more likely to talk business at lunch. They see what they do as a true profession and are genuinely interested in it.
This adjuster is loyal to vendors.
As logical as it seems, you would think that most adjusters would recognize that a tight-working relationship with a vendor serves to enhance not only the ultimate outcome of any given claim, but also the perceived performance of any adjuster.
Unfortunately, it may seem that most do not. Except that this adjuster, the "Master Adjuster", definitely recognizes this point and will go to bat for a vendor, if needed.
They are loyal to trusted vendors whom they perceive to be experienced resources. I can''t say this enough; this is a great client to have.
As to the property claims industry, these "Master Adjusters" will usually have titles like Commercial Property Adjuster, Senior Property Adjuster, General Adjuster and Executive General Adjuster.
The last title will handle claims into the millions of dollars. They have a great deal of autonomy and, despite what they may say in the field, most everything they turn in is "rubber stamped" for approval by their superiors.
Just be advised, before you go looking for one of these prize relationships, you better be prepared.
The great news is that the four personalities overlap, so that a person may be a combination of two or three.
A client or prospect may be a "Master Adjuster" in the making. But now you know what they aspire to and how you can maneuver into their future plans.
Peter Crosa has been a licensed independent adjuster for more than 35 years, handling insurance claims throughout the United States and Latin America. Since 2000, he has traveled across the country conducting seminars and speeches on the topic of marketing restoration services to the insurance claims industry. He is author of the 2010 Restoration Contractors Guide to Insurance Repair. Visit his website at www.sshca.net or e-mail him your question at email@example.com.