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New Mexico Mutual is proud to announce

that we can now take care of your Ticketing Information

Now boarding your out-of-state workers’ compensation clients... From now through March 31, 2011, qualify for Southwest Airlines gift cards by using our new program. Give us a look! $500 Southwest Airline Gift Card Drawing • For an out-of-state application submitted, the agent/CSR name will be placed in the drawing once. • For any out-of-state policy that is bound with premium less than $25,000, the agent/CSR name will be placed in the drawing twice. Bind it with us! $100 Southwest Airline Gift Card • Qualify by binding any out-of-state account (can include any new New Mexico business premium towards the premium goal) with premium of $25,000 to $49,999. $250 Southwest Airline Gift Card • Qualify by binding any out-of-state account (can include any new New Mexico business premium towards the premium goal) with premium of $50,000 to $100,000. $500 Southwest Airline Gift Card • Qualify by binding any out-of-state account (can include any new New Mexico business premium towards the premium goal) with premium over $100,000. The preferred workers’ compensation insurance carrier of the Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico, New Mexico Mutual wants your business! Just submit a completed Accord application, loss runs and emod worksheet to your underwriter and we’ll take it from there. Fact information for New Mexico Mutual Out of State Program Midland Management Corporation/PMA Companies – AM Best Rating - A- VIII Submission requirements Accord Application Loss Runs – 3 to 5 years E-mod Worksheet

Underwriters for out-of-state program Evelyn Symonds Renee Pagan 505-343-2827 505-343-2852

Requirements to bind Signed Accord Application Down Payment Direct bill from Midlands Management Corporation

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customers with out-of-state exposure.


All states are eligible for Other States Coverage Program except the “monopolistic states” of North Dakota, Ohio, Washington and Wyoming.

We are now where your clients need us to be.


SM • 1-800-788-8851

You are invited to attend: January 26, 2011 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

La Posada de Santa Fe 330 East Palace Ave Santa Fe, NM 87501

Click here for more information

Homeowners Catastrophe Insurance Trust

Your preferred homeowners clients deserve the broadest possible coverage for their homes and personal property. As an active member of IIANM, you have the original -- the very best such program available to you right now. The HCIT Difference in Conditions (DIC) policy supplements basic homeowners coverage by providing protection for catastrophic losses, including FLOOD and EARTHQUAKE.

Just contact:

Trustco, Inc. - HCIT Program Administrator

2063 East 3900 South Ste. 100, Salt Lake City, UT 84124 1-800-644-4334 / Fax: 801-278-9051

Bobbi Phillips / Eric Kingdon /

a L

“La Voz� is the official monthly publication of the

Independent Insurance Agents of NM 1511 University Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM 87102. (505) 843-7231. Fax (505) 243-3367. Web site This publication is intended to provide accurate and authoritative information on the subject matter covered, but is distributed with the understanding that neither IIANM, nor any contributing author, publisher, contributor or advertiser is rendering legal, accounting or any other professional service and assume no liability whatsoever in connection with its use. Further, the electronic links to our advertisers and/or contributors found in this publication are provided as a courtesy to our readers and do not necessarily indicate an endorsement by IIANM.


"The Voice" of Independent Agents since 1934

o VZ

A Proverbial New Year's Message from IIANM CEO Thom Turbett


Trusted Choice New Benefit for Members Starts Now


Problems Are So Easy to See... when they're someone elses


News items from members of Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico and the general insurance industry are encouraged. The advertising deadline is the fifteenth day of the month, preceding publication.

Furnishing MVR's... Legal, but Not Permitted


Upcoming Webinars


10 Easy to Avoid Advertising No-Nos


Advertising rates are available upon request.

ACT's Online Resources to Assist Independent Agents


Heads Up - 51st Annual Education Seminar


Agency E&O Protection


IIANM's 2011 Calendar of Events


IIANM's Endorsed Designation Certification


Please contact Rachel Sheffield at for details

IIANM Staff President/CEO Thom Turbett, CIC VP Of Membership Services Lorri Gaffney

In Every Issue Tech Talk


Director Of Communications Rachel Sheffield

Education Edge


Director Of Insurance Programs Carmen Reese Porter, ACSR, CISR

January's Clickable Calendar


Odds n Ends


IIANM's Partners Program


Receptionist / Member Services Associate Renee Rivera

2010-2011 Officers

Advertiser Index Acuity


American Mining Insurance Company


Burns & Wilcox


Vice-Chair Scott Jones

Colonial General Insurance Agency, Inc.


Litchfield Special Risks, Inc.


Secretary/Treasurer PJ Wolff

Market Finders, Inc.


National Director Sam Conlee

Neff Risk Services, Inc.


New Mexico Mutual


Risk Placement Services (RPS)




Chair Kathy Yeager

Immediate Past Chair Alma Franzoy-Capron

A Proverbial New Year’s Message from IIANM CEO Thom Turbett An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. ~Bill Vaughan Happy Near Year! Based on the economic struggles we’ve all been through these past several years, I’m guessing that the second part of the above quote would resonate with many in the insurance industry. A continuing lousy economy, an incessantly long soft market, and onerous government regulation/corruption among other ills have combined to increase the ranks of the pessimists. I’m here to commiserate with you, because many of us are in the same boat. Here at IIANM, we are looking at every expense with a very critical eye toward its value, and I would expect that many of you are doing the same. We are a much leaner and efficient organization than we were a year ago, and we will continue to move in that direction. For example, our popular membership directory will go to an electronic-only format in 2011 following in the footsteps of our monthly publication, La Voz. We also completely revamped our website in 2010 by adding a lot of new agency management content and making it more user friendly and easier to navigate. If there is no struggle, there is no progress ~Frederick Douglass Positive changes like these are sometimes the result of the re-evaluation process during tough times. Even though they came about because of a need to save on expenses, they make sense even without the monetary issues. So even in this difficult environment, I would still place myself on the optimistic side of the ledger because I believe that challenges tend to make us stronger. In fact, from my perspective I would say that the insurance business is actually blessed to be an industry that everyone loves to hate, because it forces us to constantly evaluate and improve. As a result, I think we handle adversity better than most. 2010 is an perfect example of that…overall a very productive year considering the challenges we faced. Here are some laudable wins that IIANM and the insurance industry enjoyed this past year: • The defeat of the EMS bill in Santa Fe. We were a very active part of a coalition that successfully beat back the efforts of the Emergency Medical and Trauma providers in New Mexico to fund their operations on the backs of personal lines carriers and their policyholders, rather than their actual budget set by the legislature. Page 6

• IIANM was named a Corporate Hero. For the second year in a row, the New Mexico Big I received a major award for our community service programs. This year it was the New Mexico Business Weekly naming us as one of their ten statewide ‘Corporate Heros’. • The passage of the Affordable Care Act of 2010. Yes, the name of the bill was quite ironic, but despite that we had some very big wins during the process. The role of agents was protected. We got state based exchanges instead of a national one. There was no repeal of state based insurance regulation, and therefore no federal authority to regulate agent commissions. And finally, there was the biggie: no public option. When the going gets tough, the tough get going ~Knute Rockne 2010 is by no means unique for accomplishments achieved from adversity. Over the years we have proved our mettle on numerous occasions, especially in the realm of politics. Does anyone remember the workers compensation crisis in the late 1980’s? IIANM was instrumental in the creation of New Mexico Mutual when the workers compensation market in NM was almost non-existent. The creation of the Mutual along with some well written reforms turned a liability into an economic development asset. Today, 20 years later, the line is profitable with many excellent markets. Best of all, rates are still less than half of what they were in 1991. It’s not just our legislative efforts that bring results. Our work with regulators also greatly benefits the industry. For example, working with the Workers Compensation Administration we led the charge to reduce the outrageous hospital costs that hospitals were charging insurance carriers. The resulting changes implemented by the WCA in 2005 translated to insurance carrier cost savings of over $15 million in the past five years.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

More recently, we have been working with the Division of Insurance to bring agents and carriers some relief from problems associated with the issuance of certificates of insurance. After a town hall meeting last month with the superintendent of insurance, you should expect in the near future to see an important DOI bulletin that will clarify the rules for issuance of certificates in New Mexico. We are also taking the lead on another issue of importance to our agents and carriers: the ever increasing costs of Motor Vehicle Records. Since the MVD signed a contract with a company to create and manage their ‘data portal’, the cost of MVR’s in New Mexico has more than doubled. Our Board of Directors believes that this creation of a virtual data monopoly may be illegal, and we are looking into the possibility of a lawsuit to bring some relief to our carriers and agents. We have already spent more than $3,500. on public information requests and are working with a well known local law firm to evaluate how the contracts were signed and funded without legislative approval. Do not rest on your laurels. There is no time like the present ~English Proverbs

Although IIANM is perhaps the best known insurance organization in New Mexico with a long list of accomplishments over our 76 year history to prove it, we pay particular attention to the proverbs above. Although it is sometimes comforting to look back, successful organizations have their mindset focused on ‘what have we done for you lately’. What we will be doing for members in 2011 begins with an important new initiative to help independent agents improve their sales and marketing expertise. Successfully branding our distribution system has been our Achilles heel for quite some time, and now is the time to begin to address it. As previously announced, each of our agency members will begin the year as a Trusted Choice member, and along with our national organization we intend to do a lot of things to help our members win back lost personal lines market share. Look for a lot more information on this and other initiatives in the coming months, but in the mean time, I would like to wish everyone a prosperous new year with a sprinkling of some good old fashioned challenges to keep you sharp and productive!

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

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ƒ Applications and Forms On Line

Simplify your work! Find all the forms you need for all of our markets on our web site:

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Save time and energy and make your policy changes efficiently by email! Send to: For peace of mind you’ll receive emailed confirmations of your change request.

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We’ll send an underwriter to work in your office for 2 days at our cost. All we ask is that you keep them busy.

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Albuquerque, NM- Tel. 888-767-9005 Phoenix, AZ-Tel. 800-592-1027

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Your Trusted Choice Membership


It’s official!

January 1st was the kick-off date for

making every IIANM member a Trusted Choice member. Every IIANM member signed up for Trusted Choice should have received a welcome email with log-on

If you thought you signed up for Trusted Choice and did not receive an email from national with log-in information or thanking you for renewing, please contact Lorri Gaffney at 800-621-3978 or 505-843-7231,

information for the Trusted Choice website, or an email thanking you for renewing.

If you have not signed up for Trusted Choice, WHY NOT? Trusted Choice membership is free to IIANM members

For all of those agencies signed-up for Trusted Choice under the Every Member is a Member program, you may

and offers many benefits including free advertising and an agency locator for those potential internet surfing clients.

now start using the Trusted Choice logo, thereby taking advantage of the national and state-wide advertising sponsored by IIABA and IIANM.

In addition, we strongly encourage all Trusted Choice members to visit the agency locator on the website and input your agency information. If you have already completed that information, please take a moment to review it for accuracy. If you do not fill out the profile for the agency locator, your agency will not appear when searches are done to locate agents – so please take advantage of this tool and maximize your exposure by completing the agency profile.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

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The Anderson Agency Report


by G. Barry Klein

This Column Will Change Your Life You're going to love this month's recommendation. Like everyone else in the business world, you spend some part of your day handling e-mail. Regardless of how good your e-mail system's spam filtering is, you still get bombarded with e-mails that make it to your inbox, and you have to delete them. It only takes a second per e-mail to delete, but you (and I) have to do it every day. (Later on, I'll explain why those e-mails get past your spam filter.)

The full system, however, is only $20 for the year. The person who recommended this to me had signed up right away. I also signed up right away. And so far, those to whom I have personally recommended it have also signed up right away. The folks who created this have a winner on their hands. Located in Southern California, launched earlier this year (2010) and won't discuss numbers, but they're growing rapidly and seem to have a handle on things. I hope so, because I love their service. is a new, low-priced, terrific service that will make a huge dent in all of this.

Why we get so much unwanted e-mail automates the process of unsubscribing to e-mails that you don't want, and you only need to use one click. Sure, you could manually unsubscribe to these e-mails, but it's often easier to click "delete" once than to open the e-mail, scroll to the bottom, decipher the unsubscribe offer, click or reply to it, and answer (or click) a confirmation question. Then, next month, or next week, or even tomorrow, you get another e-mail you don't want. Ad infinitum.

Note I didn't call it "spam," because much of it (technically at least) isn't actually spam. All commercial e-mail is regulated by the CAN SPAM Act of 2003. It defines spam as "unsolicited commercial e-mail." Whether a business e-mail is actually spam or not, it still falls under the purview of the Act. That's why, when you voluntarily sign up for a respectable newsletter, every issue still gives you the option to opt out. Just because you wanted it yesterday doesn't mean you'll still want it tomorrow.

How it works If you have either Outlook or Gmail, can download a small program that adds an Unsubscribe button to your e-mail client (or browser). Unsubscribing is a one-click operation that is as quick and easy as deleting. The company is currently working on the button for Yahoo (which may be implemented by the time this article is published), and more are planned. If you don't have one of their supported systems, you can simply forward the e-mail to them (no note or anything else involved). Like most other services, offers a free version, which is limited to five "unsubscribes" per month.


There are other exceptions to what is considered "unsolicited" e-mail. If you bought a printer from HP or a pair of jeans from L.L. Bean, you're now a customer and have a business relationship. They're entitled to send you e-mail, whether you want it or not. They just have to offer you an opt-out opportunity. In addition to legitimate vendors, there are quite a few highly reputable e-mail services, including the industry leader, ConstantContact. Also, registering for conferences and conventions puts you on the mailing list for every vendor at the show. (If you're unfortunate enough to be a columnist, like yours truly, you'll receive breathlessly excited press releases about every product and upgrade from every technology vendor in the free world. Or at least it seems that way.)

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

E-mails from these firms get past standard e-mail spam filtering (unless you've set up specific filters) because these firms are reputable and have proven, time and again, that they're sending to people with relationships or who have signed up. Regardless, just because you bought something once doesn't mean you want to receive monthly, weekly, or sometimes even daily ads. That's why makes it so easy to get off these lists. When you click the unsubscribe button (on Gmail, my e-mail provider), there is a very short pause while an "unsubscribing" message shows. Then the screen goes blank for a moment, and the e-mail is moved to the trash. You can unsubscribe to multiple e-mails all at once, just as you could delete them in one batch. If you've accidentally unsubscribed without meaning to, just retrieve the deleted e-mail, move it back to the inbox, and forward it to unsubscribe with a note, and they'll reverse it.

Not that you're looking for more e-mail, but Unsubscribe. com offers to send you a monthly, weekly, or daily report on your activity. Not all unsubscribe attempts are successful. Some might require an action from you (usually a confirmation) and some won't work at all. (It's my belief that the occasional one that fails is usually from a notreputable source.) By law, senders have 10 days to get you off their list. Most do it significantly faster, but it still might take a few days to start seeing the results. Very soon, however, you'll notice a markedly reduced number of unwanted emails in your inbox. You'll love it. G. Barry Klein is a former insurance agent who maintains as an industry service.

“insurance from people who know mining”

We offer Workers’ Compenasation Insurnace for:

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Coal mines: surface and underground coal truckmen

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quarries sand and gravel digging

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other types of mining mining related risks

For more information, contact Bryant Brown, V.P. Marketing • 1.800.448.5621, x 249. 3490 Independence Drive • Birmingham, Alabama 35209 WWW.AMERICANMINING.COM Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011


Colonial General Insurance Agency

Commercial Lines/Brokerage Department  Founded in 1985, Colonial General Insurance Agency, Inc. is a wholesale General Agency providing quality insurance products to the Independent Insurance Agent. Colonial General specializes in both standard and non-standard business. Our Property and Casualty business includes:

Preferred BOP


Inland Marine

Professional Liability

Commercial Liability

Workers Compensation

Avoid monthly or annual membership fees, use Colonial General for your Preferred Business Owners Policies. We have several markets available to give you the best quote possible. For additional information contact your underwriter.

Transportation Department 

Commercial Auto


Physical Damage

Commercial Contract

NB Mexican Truckers

Local Radius

Personal Lines


Intermediate Radius

Professional Liability

With 2,500 active producers under contract, Colonial General operates in eight states throughout the South-West. Our offices are located in Murray, Utah and Scottsdale, Arizona. Most of all, we pride ourselves in our friendly customer service and our ability to help our producing agents with their many insurance needs.

Please contact our Utah office for all your Transportation needs!           P.O. Box 571770, Murray, Utah 84157 Phone: (801) 562-1188 Wats: (800) 594-8900 Fax: (801) 562-2218 Toll Free Fax: (800) 332-9285

Personal Lines Department  ♦

Masterpiece Company

Standard Company


Stand-alone Liability



Dwelling Fire


Preferred Commercial Lines Division  P.O. Box 14770 Scottsdale, AZ 85267 8475 E. Hartford Drive, Suite #100 Scottsdale, AZ 85255 Phone: (480) 991-7889 Wats: (800) 848-8860 Fax: (480) 948-1394

You will never pay a fee to access our companies. No volume or binding contracts.

Problems are so easy to see... when they're someone else's!

Consider these examples: • The agency owner who hires a producer who clearly has no selling ability. Everyone except the agency owner can see the person will go nowhere as a producer. • The agency owner who signs contracts with carriers and vendors without even glancing at what is in the contracts. • The serial acquirer who buys agencies without any due diligence. • The agency that puts customers into a small account department with very limited services but promises all clients, per their brochure and web-site, the best coverages and professional advice. I am willing to bet every reader can identify with how basic these mistakes are and how important it is to avoid them. Few agency owners would ever purposely make any of these mistakes but these types of mistakes occur every day. The good news is they can be easily corrected if the agency owner has the ability to see the problem for what it is when confronted with it. Seeing a problem is incredibly easy when the problem is not your own because no emotions are involved to cloud your vision. When the problem is yours, the key is to not let your emotions blind you. Emotions are powerful. In fact, I have seen agency owners go completely blind even when confronted with a problem as basic as trust money. I've seen agency owners deny that being severely out of trust is a problem, even when the legality of the issue is clear and even when their attorney tells them it's a problem. They would absolutely see the issue if it was someone else's problem. But when it is theirs, they start to rationalize. They start believing it's okay because their carriers are being paid on time so no one will ever know. Emotions will trump the facts in decision making almost every time.

by Chris Burand

When you see producers that only have $100,000 commissions after five or even ten years, do you rationalize why it is okay for them to have such a small book? I have heard dozens of rationalizations, including: • "When he started 20 years ago, we didn't tell him any different." • "He can't sell but he works hard, so it's okay." • "It's a tough market." • "He was never trained." • "We don't have the right companies." • So on and so forth. If you've heard yourself or partners make rationalizations, at least you are beginning to see the problem for what it is. Now can you see the solution for what it is and act upon it? This is one of those easier said than done situations. Now that you see what needs to be done, it's tough to do it. I have personally found it is easier to take the correct action sooner rather than later. The pain is going to be the same either way so why not get it over with? To my surprise and to the surprise of many clients, the tough action often has unexpected positive consequences because everyone else in the agency already knew the problem and the solution. They were just waiting on the owner to take the appropriate action. Even when a producer or CSR is fired, they are sometimes relieved because they knew they were failing. The result is everyone's vision of the future improves. So here's the challenge: If you were someone else looking at your agency, what would you see and what would you recommend?

So when you examine your agency, how clearly are you really seeing it? Are you seeing your lack of growth for what it is? I know the market is soft and the economy is poor. Growth is tough and these factors are out of your control. But this is not where the thought process should end. Are you seeing both top and bottom line growth from your marketing expenditures? If not, why keep spending the money? Are your producers making enough calls? Opportunity is not going to knock on your door in this economy, you've got to be knocking on opportunity's door.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

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Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

by Mike Edwards, faculty, Virtual University

‌ legal but not permitted Commercial insureds in the process of hiring employees who will be driving company vehicles routinely contact their insurance agents to have the drivers added to the business auto policy. Typically, the commercial insured will provide the agency with the new employee's driver's license number so that the agency can run a motor vehicle report. Some agencies have the practice of faxing the employer a copy of the MVR, especially in situations where the employee's driving record does not meet the underwriting guidelines of the business auto policy. In other instances, the agency might call the employer to discuss problems with the MVR.

It's legal. The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, which applies to all "consumer reports," including MVRs, Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange reports, credit scores and many other types of information on individuals, has very strict guidelines on what is legal regarding the use of such reports. Under the FCRA, employers are well within their rights to require that current or prospective employees provide or make available a wide variety of personal information, such as an MVR, credit report, criminal background report, etc. At the same time, employees are granted significant safeguards regarding the access and use of such information for employment. When any consumer report will be used for employment, the employee or prospective employee must first give written permission for such information to be obtained by the employer. When the employer requests this information from a consumer reporting agency such as Equifax, Experian, TransUnion, ChoicePoint, etc., there are certain federally mandated documents and procedures that must accompany the transaction between the reporting agency and the employer. For a detailed report on this, see the Federal Trade Commission report, "Using Consumer Reports: What Employers Need To Know," available on the FTC website at

An insurance agency that pulls an MVR in conjunction with "the underwriting of insurance," as prescribed in the FCRA, Section 604, does not need written permission. Therefore, when the commercial insured (the employer) sends a request to the agency to pull the MVR on a new employee in conjunction with adding the employee as a driver under the business auto policy, the agency can do so without the written permission of the new employee. In addition, to inform a commercial insured that a new driver does or does not qualify as a driver for underwriting purposes seems to be a part of "the underwriting of insurance." However, most experts believe that if the agency shares the specific contents of an MVR with the employer, via fax or phone, the agency is no longer underwriting insurance but is now acting as a consumer reporting agency and must follow all the steps and procedures required under the FCRA. Therefore, if the agency chooses to furnish MVRs to commercial insureds on their current or prospective employees, it may legally do so, if it follows all the requirements of a consumer reporting agency under the FCRA. Thus, the procedure can be legal.

But it's not permitted. While the practice of an insurance agency furnishing MVRs to commercial insureds on their current or new employees can be legal under the FCRA, virtually all sources from which the agency obtains the MVRs expressly prohibit the practice. Following are excerpts from the contracts of two MVR providers that many insurance agencies use. MVR Company A: The Consumer Reports provided by Company A are for the sole and internal use of the Insurance Agency, and may not be resold, sub-licensed, delivered or displayed in any way or used by any third party. Insurance Agency certifies that it shall order, receive, disseminate and otherwise use the Consumer Reports in compliance with all applicable federal, state and local statutes, rules, codes and regulations. Insurance Agency agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Company A from any and all damcontinued...

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Page 15

Who has the ability to handle all your specialty insurance needs?


Answer is Your Specialty Insurance Professionals

Professional Liability Umbrella & Excess Employment Practices Commercial Property Products Liability General Liability Commercial Auto Personal Lines

Global Resources. Local Relationships. Albuquerque, New Mexico

(866) 643-8538 / (505) 822-0018 / fax (505) 822-0092

ages, costs, judgments and expenses. MVR Company B: All reports, whether oral or written, will be kept strictly confidential; except as provided by law, no information from reports will be revealed to any person except the subject of the report. No information will be requested for the use of any other person, agency or organization except with the written permission of Company B. Reports may not be resold or transferred to any other person. The unlawful ordering or use of consumer reports can subject you to criminal and civil penalties in accordance with both federal and state laws. Recently, one of the largest MVR companies in the nation sent this memo to all insurance agency customers: It has recently come to our attention that some insurance agencies may be furnishing MVRs obtained for commercial underwriting purposes to the commercial insurance buying customer. Please be aware that the consumer reports you obtain from us may not be used beyond the purpose for which they were ordered and cannot be sold or given to parties outside the ordering insurance company or insurance agency. Allowing an employer to receive an MVR that was provided to you for commercial underwriting purposes would be a violation of law as well as a violation of your agreement with us. Thus, the practice of an insurance agency furnishing MVRs to commercial insureds on their current or prospective employees is not permitted by most MVR providers, although the practice can be legal under the FCRA. Legal experts caution insurance agencies about getting involved in employee screening on behalf of their commercial insureds. As employers, commercial insureds not only have a right to conduct background checks on employees; in today's legal climate, they almost certainly also have a duty to do so. However, there are countless employee screening services that can conduct proper, legal and permissible background checks on employees. Agencies should refer their commercial insureds to these screening services. It is imperative that agencies distinguish between insurance underwriting functions and those that cross the line into employee screening activities. While agencies obtain MVRs and other consumer reports as a part of underwriting, there must be clear guidelines limiting their disclosure for any other purpose. Legal experts recommend that agencies include such a privacy guideline in their employee handbook or agency operations manual.

Upcoming & Recorded Webinars & Events • Save Time & Increase Profits with Real Time Live free webinar--Jan 12, 2011, 2:00-3:00 PM EST Demos, benefits & tips for successful Real Time implementation for new users, as well as agencies that want to increase utilization To register, click here • Implementing an Effective Information Security Program in your Agency Live free webinar--Jan 13, 2011, 2:00-3:00 PM EST The session outlines how federal and state law, as well as good risk management practice, have made it mandatory for agencies to implement an information security program that is anchored by a written security plan. The program covers the security risks agencies face, practical steps to take to manage these risks, and the free tools and articles that ACT has produced to assist agencies with their security program-- including a prototype agency information security plan. To register, click here For more information on upcoming live webinars, please click here

Recorded Webinars, Podcasts & Sessions • The Social Web and Insurance - Finding Success & Lessons Learned Click title for recorded webinar featuring agents Claudia McClain & Angelyn Treutel and consultants Rick Morgan & Mike Wise discussing their experiences using social media. Click here for PDF of PowerPoint • ACT’s Latest Issues, Initiatives & Challenges Click for recorded Insurance Journal podcast featuring Jeff Yates, Peter van Aartrijk & Rick Morgan • Successful Agency Techniques to Build, Integrate and Manage your Blog, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube Click for recorded webinar featuring Ryan Hanley, Chris Jordan & Rick Morgan. • Agency E&O Considerations when Social Networking (Click for more details, Webinar recording & PowerPoint) • Industry Initiatives to Improve the Efficiency of the E&S Market Make Progress (Click for more details, Webinar Recording & PowerPoint)

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Page 17

10 easy-to-avoid Advertising


Remember the saying that if your doors are open, you should be advertising. Silence is not an option; if you aren’t out there, the competition will be defining your brand for you. When done well, advertising can have the impact of making you appear to be a bigger player than you are. It can establish or enhance your credibility as a serious business. To get the most for your advertising buck, avoid these 10 no-nos: 1. No plan. If your firm doesn’t have an advertising plan, the ad sales reps are still glad to take your money. Start out with a modest plan, but have a plan. It should include specific target audience sets. 2. No budget. Best Practices agencies typically budget 2-3 percent of revenues for advertising and promotion. You can’t just run a couple of newspaper ads and expect results. 3. No customer contact. Don’t advertise to strangers unless you have a top-notch, tested and consistent plan to reach out to your current customers. 4. No clear and pre-tested messages. Why dream up slogans and ad copy on your own? You can draft copy, but let your employees – and some customers – provide you feedback first. Leverage the language contained in the Trusted Choice Pledge of Performance. Remember you’re communicating back to the consumer exactly the things they say they want in an insurance provider! Also, you can use the professionally produced, tagable Trusted Choice ads available in the “Agents/Brokers” section of and add your agency info for maximum market impact. 5. No unified look to all materials. Your dollars work harder and your brand communications are more consistent when all your creative materials have the same look and feel.

When done well, advertising can have the impact of making you appear to be a bigger player than you are.

owners. Feature them in your ads. Go a step further: Find very special clients willing to talk about your agency in TV, radio or print ads. That depicts true partnerships. 8. No staying power. Agency owners often get discouraged when they don’t see immediate results from advertising. Remember, it takes at least a two to three-year commitment. If your ads are good, there will be a cumulative effect over time. Be patient. 9. “Spray and pray.” This is the worst offense of all, and it’s perpetuated by ad sales reps. “We’re having a summer special,” the radio rep will tell you. “You get 100 ads for only 100 bucks.” Such a deal, right? Not if the ads are running different weeks, days and times and you can’t get him to tell you how many drive-time spots you’ll get. Like anything else, you get what you pay for in the advertising business. 10. Not tracking results. You must put someone in the agency in charge of benchmarking your calls and referrals and tracking quarterly results of your campaigns.

Trusted Choice is running cable advertising as well as Internet-based ads throughout the year, so it’s a great time for agents and brokers to take their agencies out to the media.

6. Do-it-yourself design. Okay, so someone on staff has some artistic talent, but that’s probably not going to cut it for a professional, modern look. If you can’t afford a full-service ad agency, hire a competent local designer. 7. Not showing your people … or customers. Customers can’t remember what’s in their business owners policies, but they sure remember their CSRs and agency

Check out for more branding tips.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Page 19

ACT’s Online Resources to Assist Independent Agents

by Jeff Yates


’s Agents Council for Technology (ACT) is committed to providing agents and the industry with practical information and tools to help them become more productive, increase their online marketing and become more secure. The association provides all of this information on its Web site at at no cost, thanks to the support of ACT member carriers, vendors and associations. Most of these resources are the product of collaborative efforts by the agents, carriers, vendors and associations participating in ACT. Much of the work is done by the various ACT work groups and you can find a listing of these groups and their current activities by clicking on “Committees & Workgroups” on the upper left of the ACT home page. The website is organized using a series of quick links found at the left margin of the ACT home page in a gray shaded area. Each link opens up a different subject – such as Real Time, Download, going paperless, security & privacy, Web sites & the Social Web, etc. – and contains relevant articles, reports, policy guides, recorded webinars and other types of presentations. The upper right portion of the ACT home page also contains a brief video overview of the site’s content and how to navigate it. So let’s review some of the recent and most popular resources on the ACT site. Agency Productivity We are finding that embracing technology and more efficient workflows have been important strategies for many Best Practices agencies. Helping agencies enhance their productivity is a big part of ACT’s mission as well, and the ACT website contains numerous resources to assist agencies in increasing their efficiency and improving their customer service. You will find multiple articles on the benefits agencies are deriving from Real Time quoting, inquiries and other transactions at the “Real Time” link. Links are provided there to the Real Time Download Campaign’s site as well, which contains carrier & vendor Real Time and Download links, agency success stories and the excellent Real Time Implementation Guide. You can also link to ACT’s own ACTtech site from the Real Time page to get direct links to vendor lists delineating the Real Time transactions specific carriers have implemented, coupled with the vendors’ Download information. At the “Download” link, we provide an excellent implementation guide developed by AUGIE (ACORD User Group Information Exchange), which is “must” reading for any agency or carrier implementing Commercial Lines Download. We also link to a recording of AUGIE’s Commercial Lines Download webinar, which provides very helpful tips for successfully implementing this technology from agents as well as carrier and vendor representatives. The “Best Practices Guide to Agency Business Processes and Electronic Information Management” developed by ACT and Laura Nettles is also available on the ACT site to help agents implement more advanced agency workflows and to become an electronically based agency eliminating paper wherever possible. This guide features detailed property casualty as well as benefit workflows, as well as provides the multiple options agents have to eliminate paper. (See “Agency Workflows” or “Going Paperless” links.)

Page 20

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Marketing & Sales Every agency principal should read the excellent article Steve Anderson wrote for ACT on implementing a balanced agency marketing strategy focused on “keeping,” ”upgrading,” “rounding out” and “getting more” business. This roadmap is provided at the “Sales & Marketing” link, along with additional resources on building a true agency sales organization and using Internet tools and other strategies to energize your marketing efforts.

also find there a list of several of the insurance carriers that have TLS activated for their agents. Being positioned to protect your agency should a disaster strike is also very important, and ACT provides at its “Disaster Planning” link checklists and reports to help agencies with their disaster planning, based upon the recommendations of agents who have experienced these unfortunate events. (Note: You will also find a New Mexico specific version here on the IIANM website.)

Agency Websites & Social Networking

Focusing on the Future

ACT has created another page – Websites & Social Media – specifically to cover the revolution in agency marketing that the Internet has created. You will find several articles and recorded webinars there on building effective agency websites, improving agency search engine positioning and using free “local search” tools and directories. The page also includes several articles and recordings focused on agency use of social media and how agencies are benefiting from using the social web to extend their marketing, communications and service.

ACT’s Strategic Future Issues Work Group is focused on looking ahead to make sure that ACT sees beyond the immediate fires of the day. You will find ACT’s latest thinking on key technology and societal trends facing us at the “Strategic Future Trends” link, coupled with our recommendations as to what the industry “must do” to respond effectively to these trends.

ACT’s Social Media page also contains a detailed guide to help agencies build their social media policy, coupled with examples of the policies two agencies have implemented. You will also find a recorded webinar outlining the considerations various organizations have taken into account in developing their policies. Agency Risk Management Agency risk management is very important when using all of these innovative technologies, but not typically a lot of fun to deal with, whether the issue involves agency security, E&O or disaster planning. So ACT has provided agents with some tools to help make this job easier for them. For example, a prototype Agency Information Security Plan is available that each agency can customize, with the aid of several drafting notes that point agents to additional considerations and resources. At the same “Security & Privacy” link, agents will find an article on the E&O risks arising from agency websites, which includes sample website disclaimers, along with an article on some of the E&O exposures that arise from the use of Social Media and how to manage them. ACT also encourages agencies to use secure email whenever they transmit client (or employee) private information, such as on commercial lines applications. The “Security & Privacy” page of the ACT site contains several articles and recorded webinars to help agencies with the implementation of secure email using TLS (“Transport Layer Security”), which is a non-proprietary, open standard recommended by ACT. You will

ACT’s Advocacy Role ACT also advocates for improved insurance processes. One such report on the “Real Time” page argues for changes in how carriers handle passwords when agencies are using their Real Time tools, because of the added security of these tools and the authentication provided by the agency management system. In addition, you will find a link to information on the “Retail Agent E&S Joint Industry Initiative,” which is being led by ACT, AAMGA, ACORD and NAPSLO to push for greater efficiencies in the E&S market by using standard applications wherever possible and automating upload and download between the retail agent and the MGA. We frequently add articles and notices of upcoming webinars and events to the ACT site, so please visit us regularly. New information is typically posted on the ACT home page. Most important, we encourage agents and ACT member carriers, vendors and associations to get involved in the ACT work groups to help create our future resources. You will find being a part of these groups to be extremely interesting and rewarding. Finally, we welcome your recommendations for additional subjects to be addressed on the site. Jeff Yates is Executive Director of the Agents Council for Technology (ACT) which is part of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America. Jeff can be reached at This article reflects the views of the author and should not be construed as an official statement by ACT.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Page 21

Page 20

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011


Mark your calendars for our upcoming continuing education seminar. Get all of your required 15 hours of CE credits in a classroom setting.

IIANM’s 51stAnnual EducationSeminar

AlbuquerqueHilton WednesdayMarch 23 & ThursdayMarch 24, 2011

15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Ho

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico

2011 Insurance Continuing Education

15 hours!

March 23rd & 24, 2011 Albuquerque Hilton Hotel

15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Hours 15Ho



The BEST $250 you will spend this year!

E&O PROTECTION Virtual Risk Consultant online tool helps Big “I” members identify exposures and “get it in writing” By Dennis H. Pillsbury

“T “V irtual Risk Consultant

can help agencies reduce their exposure to E&O…[and] avoid claims for failure to offer coverage or for misrepresentation of coverage.” –Sabrena Sally Senior Vice President Swiss Re Insurance Corp.

here’s nothing that makes us happier when there is an E&O claim than when an agent reaches into the file and pulls out documentation,” says Sabrena Sally, senior vice president with Swiss Re Insurance Corp., a provider of the national agency E&O program for members of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA). “When we underwrite an agency, we look at a variety of factors including size, loss history, types of products offered, jurisdictions, and operations. We look to see if the agency has risk management procedures in place, including file documentation, education of employees and the methodology for documentation,” she continues. “A specific question in the application asks agencies whether they use a checklist when writing coverage for clients. The presence or lack of such a procedure is considered with the overall exposure of the agency in determining the rate we will charge. “Virtual Risk Consultant (VRC) can help agencies reduce their exposure to E&O problems in a number of ways,” Sabrena explains. “It helps agents identify coverages available for exposures that are unique to particular industries. This can help agents avoid claims for failure to offer coverage or for misrepresentation of coverage.”

Reprinted from the December 2010 issue of Rough Notes magazine

The Big “I” Virtual Risk Consultant is an online sales and service resource available exclusively to IIABA members. VRC helps agency staff understand the exposures of their customers and assists them in preparing proposals, explaining complicated coverage terms, and documenting client files. “No matter how long you’ve been in business, you need an organized way to gather information,” notes Jack Sherrill, CPCU, CLU, an independent agent with Sherrill & Co., Savannah, Georgia. “I use VRC to produce a survey form that is industry-specific and go through that with a new account. I also use it for an explanation of coverages. Lastly, I use the coverage questionnaire to talk to clients about coverages they may not have. “It makes the agent a better risk from the point of view of an E&O underwriter,” Jack adds. “But more important, it makes you look more professional in front of customers.” When a client decides not to purchase a particular coverage, “I do try to get that in writing. But I’m a salesman first and enthusiastic about loss control second,” he admits, “so I’m not going to demand a signature. We’ll document the discussion by sending a follow-up e-mail confirming that the client chose not to buy. We also send periodic reminders about coverages that clients often choose not to buy, like flood coverage. We’ll send out a reminder to all our homeowners clients pointing out that floods are not covered.” Jack served on the Loss Control Working Group of the Big “I” that approved VRC. He noted that as part of their due diligence, the group surveyed the Best Practice agencies to find out how they handled their

“Risk management

is about having a well-run operation. Mitigation grows out of that. VRC used well makes you a better agent and helps you avoid potential E&O exposure at the same time.” –David Hulcher Assistant Vice President Agency Professional Liability Risk Management IIABA





E&O exposure. “Many had specific checklists that they used and they shared those with the group. VRC is as good if not better than everything we saw,” he points out. “Another great feature of VRC,” Jack continues, “is the fact that it is regularly updated so that we are providing current knowledge to our clients.” The Rough Notes Company, which powers the product, regularly updates the information. He concludes: “We wanted to offer members a tool that was comprehensive, easy-to-use, and affordable. We certainly accomplished that.” David Hulcher, IIABA assistant vice president of agency professional liability risk management, describes himself as a cultural warrior who wants every agency to have VRC. “Risk management is about having a well-run operation. Mitigation grows out of that. VRC used well makes you a better agent and helps you avoid potential E&O exposure at the same time. “It also helps to uncover those hidden profits that can be realized by writing additional needed coverages for existing clients,” he notes. David points out that Swiss Re claims data for the Big “I” Professional Liability Program shows that about 40% of claims involve the agent’s failing to procure coverage and/or failing to adequately identify exposures. The risk analysis system in VRC assists producers and CSRs in avoiding these potential problems by: • Helping them understand the exposure of businesses in more than

We presc the Big I A ribe dvantag Virtual e

650 different industries, including recommended minimum coverages. • Allowing them to create and print comprehensive ques® tionnaires to collect the information necessary to complete ACORD applications. • Providing them a Annual comprehensive list of subscrip coverages with succinct tions definitions to enhance start at understanding at the $250! point of sale. • Offering important t tools customer file documentaessmen nts: diew grew w ersiaonbasularirvskeaysssand coverage tion in the form of a Active in ercial and p.i on .net/ m VroRpoCsal tools  Com osure identificati comprehensive checklist of (Exp es and p ssary) rc ) u ts so lis re o check coverages offered, fere rance gl ignce reB letter I A s,vinasu Coverage CV ngtatogoels®(Client Dtuformd R  O ir in A , ct accepted, rejected or not a spReisk tent) l ro (PF&M gPo p d n w etin a ered by te conCon applicable which is  Markplates and websiRough Notes sultant d tem sales an signed by the customer agency thargic le f o f : relie Use (or followed up via e-mail) rally for ence. Use libe roducer confid and stored in the file. ce of lack of p r the pri years fo Using a football analogy get four : Dosage e annually (or 24/7. b that hits too close to home Subscri vailable online A three). for Indianapolis Colts fans and owledge nt in kn ects: ff (like most of us here at e roveme ncy staff Side p g to im g in ge m failin  Dizzyfessionalism of aE&O claims frocu Rough Notes), David advises mer fy sto inst pro ti ga n a e n id o lati ge or agents to “adopt a winning  Inoecur proper covera ncy’s your age off approach to business rather market re su o te n nt to exp co d e at ven than playing not to lose. VRC in  Reju ices l result VRC wil serv can be a valuable offensive osure to xp e d nge g: Prolo tool for agencies that want Warnin ccess. ncy su ge a to run up the score against ively their competition.” e exclus t purchasr the counter a r fo le b For general information or a Availa members ove VRC. et/ limited demo visit to Big “I” www.iiaba.n VRC. Should you have questions about what is included in VRC, contact Margaret Rhodes or Nancy Lynch at (877) 582-9199. ■

Risk Cons





2011 -Tentative-

Calendar of Events January 11th & 12th 13th 17th 26th

Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Martin Luther King Day Legislative Mixer

Kitty Leslie


February 8th & 9th 10th 21st

Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Presidents Day


March 3rd 8th & 9th 10th 23rd & 24th

AAI 83A Principles Agency Management Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review 50th Annual Education Seminar

Kitty Leslie


April 5th 6th 7th 12th & 13th 14th 22nd 28th

ACSR #2 Personal Auto ACSR #8 Commercial Auto AAI 83B Agency Company Relations Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Good Friday Free E&O Class


May 3rd 4th 5th 9th 10th & 11th 12th 30th

ACSR #3 Personal Lines Related Coverages ACSR #9 Commercial Lines Related Coverages AAI 83C Agency Financial Management IIANM/NMM Golf Tournament Property & Casualty License Exam Review Kitty Leslie Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Memorial Day


June 7th 8th 9th 14th & 15th 16th

ACSR #4 E&O Loss Control ACSR #7 Commercial Liability AAI 81A - Principles of Insurance Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review


Office Closed - Independence Day ACSR #5 Professional Development AAI 81B - Personal Lines Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Southern Seminar Property & Casualty License Exam Review

IIANM IIANM IIANM Las Cruces Las Cruces

ACSR # 6 Commercial Property TBD AAI 81C Commercial Property Insurance Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review


July 4th 6th 7th 12th & 13th 14th 20th & 21st (tent) 20th & 21st (tent)

August 3rd 4th 4th 9th & 10th 11th

Kitty Leslie

September 5th Office Closed - Labor Day 7th & 8th (tent) Last Chance Seminar (tentative) 13th & 14th Property & Casualty License Exam Review 15th Life & Health License Exam Review 21st & 22nd(tent) 77th Annual Convention (tentative)


October 11th & 12th 13th

Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review


November 8th & 9th 10th 24th & 25th

Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Thanksgiving

Kitty Leslie


December 1st 6th & 7th 8th 26th

IIANM Holiday Party Property & Casualty License Exam Review Life & Health License Exam Review Office Closed - Christmas



Are You Tired of Throwing Your


Down the

Bottomless CIC Money Pit? Then you should consider the IIANM endorsed Accredited Adviser in Insurance (AAI) program.

Why earn the Accredited Adviser in Insurance designation? Compare:



Cost to obtain designation $1,795 $1,575 Annual Cost to maintain designation $ 434 x forever $0 9 classes x 1 day each = Time 5 classes x 2.5 days each = Commitment 12.5 days + exam time 9 days (including exam time) Update Requirement Yes (2.5 day/every year) None

Designation = Professional certification A designation is earned by a person to assure qualification to perform a job or task. Many certifications are used as post-nominal letters indicating an earned privilege from an oversight professional body acting to safeguard the public interest.

Download AAI Brochure

2011 Dates Please click the links below to register on-line. March 3

AAI 83A - Principles Agency Management

April 7

AAI 83B - Agency Company Relations

May 5

AAI 83C - Agency Financial Management

June 9

AAI 81A - Principles of Insurance

July 7

AAI 81B - Personal Lines

August 4 AAI 81C - Commercial Property Insurance

• 95% of program completers said earning the designation was important to demonstrating their professional competency. • 89% of completers stated that earning the designation provided them with increased job opportunities. • 82% of designees believed they gained greater job security during times of organizational consolidation and transition. • More than 83% said earning the AAI designation helped fast-track their career progression.

Independent Insurance Agents of New Mexico - - * January 2011

Page 29


EducationEDGE Insurance Education Programs in New Mexico are critical to a successful and profitable career in the insurance industry. Every year, we offer exciting opportunities to expand your professional horizons. All of these education programs are designed to help insurance agents thrive in the most competitive of marketplaces. The pre-licensing classes are designed to be a review for the state licensing examination. We recommend that students be familiar with the study material prior to attending class.

Pre-Licensing Study Materials

Pre-Licensing Classes Study materials are NOT included in class prices.

To see a list of what is available and to purchase your study materials online, click here.

Property & Casualty Review Class (2 days)

Life & Health Review Class (1 day)

Regular Price: $150 Member Price: $120

Regular Price: $115 Member Price: $90

Instructor: Instructor:

Kitty Leslie

- January 11 - 12 8am - 5pm - February 8 - 9 8am - 5pm

Click here for a full listing of our education program.

Instructor: Instructor:

Jeff Straight - January 13 8am - 5pm Bob Ouellette - February 10 8am - 5pm

The FINE PRINT: IIANM reserves the right to cancel/reschedule classes. Please call ahead to verify when classes will run. Decisions will be made three days prior to class. Cancellations received after 5 business days, will be assessed a $50.00 cancellation fee. Cancellations received on or after deadline and ‘no shows’ will forfeit the registration fee altogether. A substitute is always welcome, with no extra fee, but prior notification would be appreciated.

Class Name/Date: Full Name:

Method of Payment:  Bill Agency (Members Only)

First Name for Badge:

 Check Enclosed (Payable to IIANM)

Agency / Company:

 M/C  Visa  Disc  Amex



(all prices include tax)

Card No:

City, State, Zip:

Exp. Date:

Telephone: ( Fax: ( Send in your registration:




) Go on-line: or E-mail:

Give us a call: (505) 843-7231 (800) 621-3978

Mail in: 1511 University Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM 87102

Fax in: (505) 243-3367

January s Clickable Calendar

- Click on a class to register online -








1 2


4 P&C Pre-licensing Class






10 e Offic sed Clo




5 P&C Pre-licensing Class




L&H Pre-licensing Class









Legislative Session Begins


Legislative MIXER!!







New Mexico’s Job Bank Looking to fill a position within your agency? Trying to find a job but don’t know where to look? Whether you are looking for somewhere new to share your special skills or an employer looking for quality, professional employees, we are there to lend a helping hand. Click here to take advantage of IIANM’s Job Bank. Do you have an agency you’re trying to sell, or in the market to buy one? Check out our Classifieds!

Big “I” Markets

Hunts Down

Outdoor Markets

Partnership with Markel opens door to insuring sportsmen Big “I” Markets was created primarily to offer member agents access to specialty niche markets that they otherwise might not want, need, or could not find access to through a direct carrier appointment. The recent expansion of new markets fits that strategy perfectly. Big “I” Markets, in partnership with Markel Insurance Company, is pleased to introduce its new niche program for Outfitters & Guides, Rod & Gun Clubs (includes shooting clubs) and Hunting and Fishing Lodges & Plantations. Marketed through Big “I” Markets, this outdoor insurance program is available on a licensed and admitted basis in all states except Alaska and Hawaii.

Program Features and Coverage Highlights: o Liability limits available: $300,000 occurrence/$900,000 aggregate $500,000 occurrence/$l million aggregate $1 million occurrence/$3 million aggregate o Property insurance forms available are Basic, Broad, and Special. Deductibles start at $1,000. o Inland Marine coverage for insureds’ and customers’ personal property, equipment, etc. o Excess liability limits to $5 million, umbrella, business interruption, and equipment breakdown. o No liability deductibles.

Odds n Ends

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anais Nin

A potential gemstone on the moon? Moon rocks have gotten a little more interesting for scientists, thanks to an Indian-launched space probe called Chandrayaan-1. The probe carried the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3), a NASA instrument that analyzes light reflected on the lunar surface to observe the moon’s mineralogical details. On the far side of the moon, M3 has discovered a previously unknown type of moon rock that planetary geologists have named OOS, after its three main ingredients: orthopyroxene, olivine, and spinel. The spinel has caught their attention because it’s a gemstone that has been used to craft the British crown jewels, among other treasures. Only trace amounts have been detected on other parts of the moon.

One ring to rule them all The Super Bowl will be played on Feb. 6 this year, and that means two teams will battle it out for glory, big bucks, and the right to wear the coveted Super Bowl ring. Click here for some fun facts about Super Bowl Rings.

Succeed in the new year with the right goals Is this the year you’re going to lose that weight, finish that novel, or get that promotion? It can be. January is the perfect time to re-examine and renew your goals. Here’s how get on track and stay there: • Explore your motivation. How will achieving your goal make you happy, or satisfy your needs? Dig deep. A promotion may mean more money, but what does that do for you? Other related rewards may provide greater motivation to succeed. • Know what you really want. Don’t assume that losing weight will change your personality or make you magnetically attractive to the opposite sex. Be realistic about the pros and cons of getting what you think you want so you won’t be disappointed. • Focus on just one factor. Instead of a complete makeover, try to improve in one area at a time. Give yourself enough time to make real, sustainable progress. You may not be able to change your personality overnight, for example, but you can become a better listener over time. Then move on to something else. • Hang out with the right people. Make connections with people who support your goals, but challenge you to do more. Or who offer new insights and perspectives. You need to have inspiring people around you. • Take risks. Don’t stay in your comfort zone. If your goals are really worthwhile, you’ll need to push yourself to try new things. Accept that you’re going to feel uncomfortable, at least in the beginning, but get into the habit of challenging yourself. • Take charge of your life. You don’t have to do what you’ve always done, or what everyone else expects. Think about what you really want to achieve, and why. Question your assumptions. You don’t have to necessarily reject everything in your life, but start with what’s really important to you and go from there.

a very special thank you to iianm’s partners

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More information can be found about IIANM’s Partner Program by visiting our website at or calling Lorri Gaffney at (505) 999-5805.

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January La Voz 2011  

The official e'zine for Independent Agents in New Mexico