The Sky Is the Limit
The opportunities are limitless.
That seems to be the consensus among employees at SwingleCollins & Associates (SCA), judging from their responses to Insurance Journal’s 2018 Best Agencies to Work For survey.
Employees of the Dallas-based firm who commented on this year’s survey enthusiastically used phrases like, “truly a wonderful place to work!!!,” “WIN, WIN for all!,” “I truly enjoy waking up to go to work every morning,” and, yes, “the sky is the limit!”
IJ’s “Best Agencies” awards are employee-driven, based on rankings and comments by respondents to a series of questions. A plethora of comments similar to those indicated above, along with a high ranking on the grading scale IJ uses in its selection of top agencies to work for across the nation propelled SCA into the Gold spot in the South Central Region.
There’s apparently a lot to like at SwingleCollins: focus on education; management’s overwhelming respect for both employees and customers; possibilities for growth and development; fair and generous compensation structure; and even $2 jeans day — where employees pay $2 for the privilege of wearing jeans at work that day. (The money goes into a pot and is donated at the end of the year to a charity.)
On the survey, several employees mentioned their appreciation of the agency’s emphasis on education.
“Producers teach weekly classes on various insurance topics to the staff and newer producers. There are also many CE opportunities in the office, and we are all encouraged to obtain accreditations,” wrote one employee. Another said there’s a strong focus on what the writer believes “to be most important in our industry. We are constantly challenged to master coverage at every level.”
Still another praised the agency for “hiring great people and creating a program to mentor these young producers, to help them overcome the hurdles most new producers face. This has created a vibrant learning opportunity for new and old producers that our agency has fully committed to.”
Caroline Jernigan, director of Talent at SwingleCollins, said the agency actively seeks to create a culture in which employees are engaged and eager to come to work. Man-agement encourages “input from employees on virtually any topic that can make us a better place to work, whether operationally or culturally,” she said.
SCA’s employees are very much aware of the lengths to which the agency goes to let them know just how essential they are.
“Everything is open door. From your supervisor to the CEO, they want to know any concern you might have and help resolve any issue that may come about from time to time,” said one employee.
“Amazing company, amazing CEO and management,” wrote another.
SCA’s management cares about its people and encourages “us to strive for a higher level of success,” wrote an employee. “We dig into coverage and sell on value, rather than ‘quoting’ business. We have a team environment in which experienced producers are more than willing to help, and we all celebrate each other’s successes.”
Jernigan said it’s “an honor to work with a truly amazing group of talented professionals that are committed to working together to serve our clients’ risk management needs. We have assembled a very special group of people who continually raise the bar and make this a great place to work.”
She recommends other agency owners and managers who want to create an attractive and effective working environment to make “your people the foundation of what you do. Focus on hiring the best people that you can, then invest in their success by providing them the tools, education and environment they need to be the best that they can be.”