Attributes of a Successful Claims Adjuster – Part 7

Last time we talked about caring for people and how it’s an essential element to doing your job as an adjuster.  Some of these principles seem so simple, but the truth is that they’re the core elements needed to find the success you’re looking for.  Continue to follow along as we look at the last two attributes.

Attributes of a Successful Claims Adjuster #7 – Respect

I’m sure those of you with a few years under your belt are immediately hearing Aretha Franklin singing R-E-S-P-E-C-T.  The rest of you should consider yourself fortunate that you’re learning adjusting much earlier in life than the rest of us.  So why spend the time even discussing something that seems so basic and simple as respect?

The truth is many adjusters get out into the field and they forget the importance of respect. Without it, your adjusting career will be cut short.  You may get one or two deployments, but you will soon be pushed to the side and not called for future deployments.  That’s why this is such a big deal.

Some things are obvious when you think about how respect applies to being an adjuster.  You need to be respectful to the homeowner who just had his roof damaged in a hail storm.  You need to be respectful to your field supervisor who calls to make sure you are closing your claims.  You need to be respectful to the coordinators who feed you claims.

But what about the homeowner who’s behaving like a jerk?  If you’ve been an adjuster for any period of time, you probably just cringed. Why? Because we’re told to never say anything bad about a homeowner or their attitudes.  But the truth is, you will run into unpleasant people out there.  Most of the time it has nothing to do with you, and everything to do with the situation.  You were just the person to whom they vent  the frustration that’s been building before you arrived on the scene.

When you have that difficult person, treat them with respect. How many times you ask? Every time.

I know your first thought might be, ”But you don’t know what they did.”  You’re absolutely right. But we’re professionals and we need to treat them with respect.  You need to be able to conduct yourself in a professional manner no matter what your environment.  That person has paid their premiums and is owed their coverage.  It doesn’t take long as an adjuster before you hear about some new hot head adjuster blowing up at a homeowner.  It happens.  The result is always the same.  Claims are pulled from the adjuster and they’re left to go home and never return.  No insurance carrier can afford the liability of someone being treated in a  less than professional manner regardless of the circumstances.

So be mindful of how you treat those around you. Be the adjuster who sets the mood for the relationship, not the one who follows the mood of others. I’ve had several insureds meet me by yelling that they’re going to sue everyone. Every time, they backed down and became a pleasure to work with once they understood why I was there and how I could help them. Respect wins out.

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