Why DI is Important to Your Life Insurance Practice

Here is an article written by my friend and Northeast Regional Sales Manager for Guardian, Thomas Wong.

In the Spring of 1988, I received a call from a dear friend, Dave.  He called to let me know that the results of his blood test taken during a routine physical exam were not good, and that he needed further testing.

I asked myself: What did he want to know from me, his friend and trusted insurance advisor?  The answer was simple: He wanted assurance that everything will be OK.  But it was not, and I did not see this coming. 

I failed Dave miserably because I never gave him a chance to “vote” on disability income(DI) insurance.  I never asked him to consider it because I didn’t think anything bad would happen to him.  After all, he was a young man in his mid-twenties, a licensed architect working for a small firm in Manhattan, with a bright future ahead. 

I had sold Dave a life insurance policy with a waiver of premium.  He was later diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia and never returned to work.  For almost two years, I watched Dave and Eva, his wife, experience an emotional rollercoaster ride and suffer through the financial devastation his sickness caused.  I wished, I had the opportunity to have a “redo.”  But I did not.

Keeping my promise

Dave passed away on October 17, 1989.  He asked me a week before his death to promise him that I would take care of his insurance for Eva and Suzanna, their one-year-old daughter.  I kept that promise and delivered the death benefit check a month later.   

In April of 1990, I joined Guardian Life Insurance Company of America as a Disability Income Marketing Specialist.  I kept a promise to Dave and to myself to do better, specializing in Individual Disability Income (IDI) Insurance to help agents and financial professionals understand the importance of income protection.

In August of 1994, I was promoted to the Northeast Regional Individual Disability Income Sales Manager. Every day since I received that call from Dave, I have known why and what I need to do:  Every agent I meet will know Dave’s story and I’d teach marketing techniques to those interested in IDI to create activity.

Each day, I also help them with the following:

*Passion. What is the value of our work? We take away people’s worry, fear, anxiety, stress and poverty by delivering monthly checks or a large check to them during a time of crisis–the worst time in people’s lives. The role we play in local communities and the impact it has on the economy and society are tremendous. Remember that you make a difference!

*Belief in the product. Own your own DI coverage by taking care of your own house.

So, please don’t make the same mistake I did. As my good friend and mentor, the late Ken Wylie used to say, “Let Your Clients Vote.” May is Disability Insurance Awareness Month.