Just for review, we’ve covered five of the eight Attributes of a Successful Claims Adjuster:
1. have a Can Do attitude
2. be a self-starter
3. be resourceful
4. be logical, and
5. have adequate computer skills
It’s important in any career to recognize your strengths and weaknesses. You are your greatest asset in life. Make sure you take time to invest in who you are.
Attributes of a Successful Claims Adjuster #6 – Care about People
I’m sure all of you reading this will fall into one of three camps of thinking on this subject.
1. What does this have to do with my work as an adjuster?
2. Why is this even a topic? Of course I care about others.
3. What do I need to know about caring for people to help my adjusting career?
If you already have that caring attitude, this is easy. But in today’s world, we’re sent a constant message that life is all about ME. I picked this job because it’s good for ME. I work hard to make money for ME. I adjust my claims because it benefits ME. I’ve got a flexible schedule so I can do what I want.
This is how most of the world teaches us to live.
I’ll be the first to say that we need to take care of ourselves. At the same time, we need to do our job for the right reasons. There’s no fault in benefiting personally from doing good for others. As an adjuster, you have a lot of power entrusted to you by both the insured and the insurer.
As an adjuster the only time you’re visiting an insured is when they have suffered a loss. Think about this a bit. The only time you show up at a home or business is when they have lost something of significance. It may be something minor or something major, but to them, it’s significant. When I was working flood claims, most of my insureds had 8 inches of water that stood in their house for some period of time.
Take a moment to think what it would be like to have 8 inches of water standing in your house for a day before receding. How would that make you feel? What would you lose or have damaged?
How would you want the adjuster to approach you when he came to adjust your claim? Would you want a dry, matter-of-fact person just taking down the information, or would you welcome some understanding and sympathy?
We’re all human. One of the biggest things you can offer the insureds is a listening ear. Show them respect by recognizing the significance of what happened in their world. Many insureds have been living in a cramped hotel for 2 weeks while the magnatude of their loss plays in their mind.
It doesn’t change anything about how their claim is written. But sitting there and letting them tell you their story creates trust. They want to know they’re being heard, taken care of, and cared for.
As an adjuster, we always tell them what to expect and what we will be doing. Then we make sure we do what we say.
Let’s look at it from the insurers perspective. You’re being evaluated based on what the insureds say about your interaction with them. Most insurance carriers do some type of feedback, especially in large catastrophes. They WILL be calling the insureds and asking them how they felt the process worked, and if they felt good about what you did.
Professionally, taking the time to show the insureds that you care will reap benefits to everyone in so many ways. Even with those few difficult people that we all encounter.
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