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Claims Education Magazine Winter 2012 Is Available Now!



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Articles in this issue: Individual article links to come shortly

Training Talk

Feature Story
He’s a Claims Man

Feature Story
The Claims World Loses One of Its Best: Mike Noakes

News Brief

Claims Education Magazine® is wholly owned and published by International Insurance Institute, Inc.
Since our first publication of Claims Education Magazine® in 2005, we have grown to over 37,000 recipients.
For all 37,000 subscribers, an e-mail announcement is sent directly to them, letting them know the current and prior editions can be viewed online at this website (
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Claims Education Magazine SPRING 2012!

Check out the new SPRING 2012 Claims Education Magazine Issue!

Click Here to go to

Download the full issue PDF »

Check out the articles in this issue:

Training Talk

Feature Story
Ambassadors in the Field

Feature Story
Conference Comes Full Circle

News Brief

Dealing with Angry People.

Carl suggests how to deal with those angry people we all encounter at some point. (from the Customer Service Video Tip Series)

Blended Learning

Different Platforms

Not too long ago the topic of blended learning came up as a topic that should be discussed in this blog. Specifically the topics of what platforms to consider to get the point across and how to measure effectiveness of the platforms. At a SITE (Society of Insurance Trainers and Educators) Conference that I attended and spoke at this year I covered the topic of blended learning. Covered in the talk were the advantages of blended learning, the different tools and strategies that can be used, along with how to manage the different tools and many other ideas To see all of the ideas take a look at the handout on the International Insurance Institute website. Let me know what you think. What are some way that you incorporate blended learning into your work? What platforms do you use? Do you find that some platforms are better than others? Anything you have to say about blended learning we would love to hear.

Social Media and Insurance Meet

Not too long ago I realized that social media was not just something for kids to keep in touch with each other or for young start-up businesses to first reach their target audience with and something worth being involved in. Social media is now something that has to be done in every business in order to stay relevant and ahead of the competition. This goes for the claims industry as well.

Jump On Board

An article recently published by Karen Furtado in Property Casualty 360 said that 80% of insurers are monitoring social media and strategically planning around them. Insurers are using social media to not only keep in touch with their contacts but to also learn from them, grow their business, and also protect their business. We, as an industry, should know that the customer is what makes our business. If they feel that they are not getting the treatment and service that they expect then they now have the power to express their dissatisfaction to others in the span of a couple of minutes through using social media. By being a part of social media we can monitor the bad and the good opinions and make changes to better suit our customers.

Social Media Meets Customer Service

With that being said, we have to remember that our business is about customer service. Customer service should take place in the field as well as in our social media components. Take a look at the article Karen Furtado wrote and see if you agree.

A Modern Shift in Claims

The claims industry has come a long way in a short amount of time. With the introduction of new technologies in not only claims but all industries, customers are expecting more from the companies that they do business with. In the article “Claims Focus Shifts from Financial to Service Concerns: Conning” by Nathan Golia, it is noted that the claims industry has previously had 2 main focuses: reducing loss adjustment expenses and reducing indemnity costs. Now, however, customers are looking to have better customer service because in other industries there is an immediacy that provides the sense of control to the customer resulting in good customer service.

Providing good customer service is essential in any business especially in the claims industry. My book, Attitude, Ability, and the 80/20 Rule, has some of the same ideas that Golia talks about in the article. Customer service needs to be a focus in the claims industry in order to compete with other industries that are constantly changing. Most people, especially the claims industry, are in the business of customer service and having an attitude that reflects that through performance is key. After all, I believe performance is 80% attitude and 20% ability.

What do you think?

Negotiation Maxim: Only Prove Yourself Right

In a recent article entitled “Gaining Cooperation,” I mention that one of the key negotiation maxims is that “You never have to prove anyone wrong; you only have to prove yourself right.” (Just Google “Carl Van Gaining Cooperation”)

Many people have asked me if claims professionals tend to fall into this trap. I would have to say that often they do. In fact, in our Negotiation Skills for Claims Professionals class, this comes up quite regularly. Most people want to be understood. If claims people take the time to let customers know they understand their point of view, they will find customers more willing to listen to their point of view. No one likes to be proven wrong. So, I always advise to acknowledge the other person’s point of view, and get back to discussing the facts.


Would love to hear your thoughts.

Question Time

This week’s question comes from a topic that was started in my LinkedIn group page, Carl Van – Awesome Adjuster. The question was posed by one of my former students and friend and asked the question of whether claimants are the enemy to adjusters. My article, Customer Service and the Claims Professional, was cited in order to show that attitude influences performance more so than ability. This principle also relates to my new book that is coming out in the next couple of weeks “Attitude, Ability and the 80/20 Rule: The Making of Exceptional Performers.”

So my question to you is the same one posed by my former student. Do you think that claimants are the enemy? Or do you think that the way adjusters deal with claimants makes a difference in the way in which claimants are perceived?

New Article

I recently wrote an article called “Oh Her? She’s New: A Lesson in Attitude and Performance.” The article talks about how having a good attitude can help you have a better performance at work. I’m very excited about the article and I hope y’all like it after reading it. I’ll post all the locations of the article as I get them but for now, enjoy reading it on


Also, I’m giving an interview on the article today for VOWS, a bridal magazine, and I’m really looking forward to it. I’ll keep you updated for when that article comes out as well. Hope you enjoy reading the article and let me know what you think about it.

What Makes a Great Manager?

The 8 Characteristics of the Awesome Adjuster available on

In the claims world, and in every profession where managers are used, there are many things that a manager can do to inspire their staff to greatness. I have written about this topic as it relates to the claims world and came up with 8 characteristics of a good adjuster. I believe that a good adjuster should have the correct attitude, desire for excellence, show initiative, use teamwork, provide great customer service and empathy, be great at time management, continue their education, and have strong interpersonal skills.

I was recently turned on to a podcast entitled “How to Inspire Your Staff to Greatness” and found the tips very informational and something that,when taken with my characteristics, will make managers even more effective. The podcast can be found here but I am going to list the 10 points made for you to read in case you don’t have time to listen to the entire thing.

The 10 points are as followed:

1) Adopt the mindset that you want to be more than just the average supervisor or manager

2) Model exemplary behavior

3) Keep your rules and regulations as simple as you can

4) Remove obstacles for employees, contractors, potential clients, etc

5) Find out how the people you are involved with learn the best

6) Make it safe for people to take reasonable risks

7) Help them to find their passion

8 ) Frame everything using motivational language

9) Create a memorable experience for your employees

10) Develop a culture of trust

What are your thoughts on the podcast? Do you think that the points relate to mine? What are some things that you feel make an adjuster better? I’d love to hear your feedback.

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