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Three Characteristics of Top Producers

What sets the best producers apart from the average ones?

By Bill Bachrach

I am frequently asked what I think distinguishes top producers from mediocre ones. There could be many reasons: competitive drive, IQ, higher pain threshold, inner motivation, better instinct. These may be true, but I have observed three characteristics common among big producers.

Being a successful producer is more than just production. A great life is the best measure. You probably know some workaholic jerks who make lots of money. Aren’t you more impressed with the people who make lots of money and have a great life? These highly successful producers share the following traits.

First, they are seekers. They seek everything that will help them get to the next level. There is more money at the next level, but there are many other things there that make it even more attractive. Most seekers already earn so much money that the additional cash is not much of a motivator. The most successful producers enjoy growing and creating just for the sake of growth and creation.

The opposite of the seeker, of course, is the cynic. While the seeker genuinely seeks information and ideas to help him get to the next level, the cynic looks for a reason not to do anything. The cynic seems to think the only way to learn is over time and through his own experience. The composer Hector Berlioz once quipped, “Time is the great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all of its students.”

Remember, someday you’ll either have what you want in life or the reasons why you don’t. Choose to get what you want.

Second, the most successful producers are investors. They invest in their most important asset: themselves. Find what you are seeking and then invest. Just like seeking and finding a great investment is of no value unless you buy it, the same is true for investments in yourself.

The investors have full bookshelves, audio tapes in their cars, and attend all the seminars. You will see the same faces at all the programs. The investors meet with producers who have been where they are going so they can build a better map to get there themselves.

The flipside of the investor is the excuse-maker. “I could be more successful, but ...” “I would have a great year if only ...” Blah, blah, blah. Being mediocre with a good excuse is not as good as being successful.

Remember, someday you’ll either have what you want in life or the reasons why you don’t. Choose to get what you want.

Lastly, the most successful producers are implementers. Seeking and investing do not produce results alone. Implementation rules.

How many ideas have you gotten in your career that would have produced great results if you had only implemented them?

How come so few people who discover great ideas follow through and implement when the evidence is so compelling that those who do get huge results? Your job isn’t to answer that question for the industry. I suggest you simply renew your commitment to follow through on the great ideas you get and implement them immediately.

Millions of people have read Dr. Stephen Covey’s great book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, but very few can name the seven habits of highly effective people. What do you think the chances are that a habit you can’t name is having a positive impact on your life? Implement.

Seek. Invest. Implement. Make this your best year ever!

Remember, don’t be a salesperson. Be a trusted advisor.

© 1999-2003 by Bill Bachrach, Bachrach & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved.

Bill Bachrach is an author and speaker for the insurance and financial advising industries. He can be contacted through Bachrach & Associates, Inc., at 800-347-3707 or visit the firm’s website:

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