Cragin and Pike CEO, Scott Kerestesi, Recently Featured on Big I “Independent Agent” Magazine
Recently, Cragin and Pike CEO, Scott Kerestesi, was interviewed among the leaders of six top performing agencies across the country for an article on the IAM (Independent Agent Magazine) website. The following is an excerpt from Scott’s interview.
Why become a Best Practices agency?
It’s a way to make sure that we continue to strive to be the best. It’s really helpful as we look to provide the best services and be the best agency that we can be. Using the metrics gives you a sense of how you stack up against other firms and how they do things. We use Best Practices as a measuring stick to make sure that we’re continuing to get better. It’s a nice way to validate putting the time and effort into what we do for our clients and our employees.
What are the important metrics for your agency?
Rule of 20 gives you a value of what you are as a firm, so how well you are doing in creating shareholder value. It doesn’t just measure investment, but it shows you where you’re profitable and the value of your firm.
What changes have you made based on the study?
Investing in new producers. When you look at the investment that you need to make in unvalidated producers to make sure you continue to grow—and for a firm like us being independent, to make sure that we perpetuate—that’s key. Using the metrics in the study, you can make sure that you’re investing for now, as well as for future success.
Has Best Practices helped you recruit talent?
The Best Practices designation is great from a recruiting standpoint. Competition is fierce for obtaining talent in today’s marketplace, so it speaks volumes when you’re recruiting and you can say, “Hey, you’re going to come work for an agency that’s truly the best and has tangible data that backs that up.” It’s a great differentiator when we are going out to recruit not just producers but all other staff.
How has the Best Practices designation built your credibility?
As a broker, you have a relationship not just with your clients, but with your carriers as well. We definitely leverage it in our marketing strategy. It’s a big differentiator. There aren’t a lot of Best Practices agencies in our state. There’s only two and we’ve been the one that’s been a Best Practices agency the longest. And with our designation as a top performer this year, we’re definitely going to take advantage of that, because it truly says we’re the best in our revenue class in the country.
Why should other agencies try to become Best Practices agencies?
By taking the time and effort to do it, you’ll not only learn a lot about how you stack up against other top agencies, but you’ll find things that are really going to help you determine how to be successful. Best Practices provides a good overall picture of how a firm operates. And if you really want to know how your firm operates, it’s a huge benefit and gives you a good sense of direction for how to be successful in the long term.