Brokers face consolidating competition, shifting regional and global markets, an evolving workforce, and an increasingly discerning customer base. More than ever before, the challenge lies in developing and nurturing a business model that fosters long-term, sustainable growth. For Vantage founder and CEO Alex Panlilio and Executive Chairman Anthony Gruppo, the answer is in the sales process. Rather than being purely transactional and focused on closing, Panlilio and Gruppo contend that successful brokers are converting to a more consultative model. In this model, nurturing in-house talent, building deeper and more diversified relationships with clients, and unifying the sales and service processes is fundamental.
Gruppo outlines what he sees as the most important talent building blocks for a transactional-to-consultative conversion. “Leadership development is critical. There are a lot of organizations that don’t know the full extent and breadth of talent working for them.” Understanding employees and the talents they already possess empowers a firm to cultivate and elevate leaders from within. Another building block, tightly linked with leadership development, is mentorship programs and career planning. When newcomers join your team, they have a career path and a mentor alongside them—so you develop a bench of future leaders.
Panlilio adds “the final part of building a talent pool for the consultative model is diversity, inclusion, and accountability. The best organizations are the ones that recognize these factors. We can see a lot of correlation between business results and when leadership teams are performance-based and transparent throughout the entire organization.” Understanding the strength and complexities of diversity in your current and future team and how communication is perceived will dramatically improve the efficacy of teambuilding, talent acquisition, and client satisfaction.