NAILBA Perspectives Perspectives Fall 2018 | Page 19

XX X nailba’s agency successor networking group ASNG 2019 and Beyond A Jerry C. Thomas, CFP® s you can tell ASNG has been a little quiet this year. With all the great changes occurring at NAILBA, we decided to take a hard look at ourselves and fig- ure out where we fit in with NAIL- BA’s vision. We had to ask ourselves “What does ASNG look like in 2019 and ahead?” ASNG was created to help second and third generation agency lead- ers discuss succession planning and business development. Since its in- ception it has become more than just succession planning, it has evolved and helped members by becoming a sounding board for ideas and topics regarding leadership and manage- ment. As we looked back at past pro- gramming we realized a majority of the topics dealt with leadership and management. We then looked to see if our membership reflected all those who could and should participate in ASNG. What we found was that we may be missing out on influential members because the group only ap- pealed to those BGAs who had picked someone out as a successor. We want to incorporate not only the successors but the leaders of the BGA members. We found as our in- dustry is evolving, so is the structure of our agencies. Agencies were pre- dominantly passed down through the family but as we all know (from our own clients planning) as we go fur- ther down the lineage more agencies end up in the hands of nonfamilial owners. What we also found is that as our agencies have grown, some- times the leadership and large deci- sion making is coming from the COO, CFOs, or Vice Presidents and not the Principals. This helped us shift our focus from only attracting successors to reaching out to BGA Leadership. We felt it was time ASNG not just look for the successors to be mem- bers of the agency but to look for the leaders of an agency to join ASNG. We found many of us in leadership posi- tions do not have a resource or sound- ing board to review ideas or chang- es we think will benefit the agency. Some of us have ideas we want to try but before we try them may want to reach out to the group and ask, “How would you approach this problem or opportunity?” “Have I looked at ev- erything I need to consider?” This is where ASNG can be a good source for members to help us create a commu- nity of collaborative thought. Some of us do have a group that resembles the top idea. We may have been lucky enough to be asked to join a study group. I myself was lucky enough to be invited to join TYGERS, which has been one of the most in- fluential groups in my business and personal development. These groups bring value not just to the individual member but to their respective BGA. It allows us to put an idea out there and get feedback or to rely on a sup- port group of people who are doing and making the same decisions as you. We want to take the activities and ideas that make a study group successful and incorporate it into ASNG. “ASNG can be a good source for members to help us create a community of collaborative thought.” To do so we looked at three things that help a study group be successful. The first is communication, by being able to readily reach out to a group of people who do and think similar to you is highly valuable. The second is meeting in person at least once per year. The third thing is incorporating partners to help create valuable con- tent to review. Here is a look of how we answered the following questions. 1. Who is a good member for ASNG? a. Leaders of their BGA. 2. What are we planning on doing? a. Monthly webinars on different topics revolving round the major departments of a BGA. 3. How will we communicate? a.  We will create central com- munication system that ASNG members can ask questions to the group. 4. Annual Event/Meeting a.  NAILBA Annual Meeting: We will bring carrier executives and consultants to review how they create and manage their annual planning in mul- tiple business departments. If you have someone in your agen- cy who is a leader and would benefit from this type of group, please have them contact Jerry C Thomas, CFP® at [email protected] or (216) 241-2300. If you have any recommendations for topics to discuss during one of our webinars or topics to discuss at the annual meeting please let us know and we can follow up accord- ingly. Here’s to a great NAILBA 2018 Annual Meeting and for a prosperous 2019! 19