I’m a working Mom. I don’t really talk about it much because of the fact that being a “working Mom” brings with it enough criticism, but now I’m not only that – I am also “The Middle Man”… Yip, I’m the insurance broker that the “Invisible Man” and all the other “wonderful” direct insurers don’t like. I could go into the reasons that they don’t like us but that is a whole issue on it’s own and this is not a work blog. This is not some type of marketing strategy, I’m getting to something – I promise. Just to prove it – here is a random picture of my brother and I – who will pop first?!
Nevertheless, I actually enjoy my job and really enjoy being able to find a solution for real people that makes them happy and works for their situation. Because let’s be honest, insurance is not the most interesting thing on the planet, so you have to find the joy where you can.
Insurance is no easy market to be in and not just because it is getting hectically competitive out there, but because there is so much stigma attached to it and not only from the general public. These are the common misconceptions that I come into almost on a daily basis:
- I am always considered to be too young to be in the position that I am in. And by default I am not taken seriously. My business partner and I often have to go to events where I am all too often mistaken for his “secretary”. At most functions I am the youngest by a good 10 years, and most of the group consists of men in their early to late 50’s…
- I have a couple of tattoo’s which is absolutely taboo in this industry it seems, especially considering their location (forearm and foot). People combine my age with my tattoo’s and assume that I don’t know anything and that they cannot take my advice seriously.
Part of my job entails that I constantly meet with new clients to discuss their situation and see where we can help them. A lot of this is done via email first, but I prefer to meet personally with people to explain how everything works (especially Medical Aid – what a total nightmare). When I meet clients (well recently anyway) I tend to get the exact same reaction:
First there’s the shock that registers on their face as I walk towards them. They slowly register that this must be the “Cindy” that they have been chatting to, but they either didn’t know that I was pregnant or they didn’t realise how big my tummy was going to be. Then they look at my face, you can see them trying to figure out how old I am – most estimating already that I am very young and maybe even too young to be having a baby. And most likely, they start thinking that I am too young to know what I am talking about.
Then the horror sets in when we make small talk and they casually assume that this must be my first baby. When I (just as casually) say that no, this is actually my 3rd baby they can’t control the total look of disbelief on their faces. It’s immediate. They try and hide it, but actually I find it so funny to watch them try and pull their face into a normal reaction after their jaw drops onto the table.
I guess as humans we are all so very quick to judge other people and their situations without really giving much thought to how they might feel when we are unable to mask our reactions. Just a little something to think about in this little thing we call life.