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Brian Cohen

Brian Cohen

Brian Cohen is currently an operating partner with Altamont Capital Partners. He was formerly the chief marketing officer of Farmers Insurance Group and the president and CEO of a regional carrier based in Menlo Park, CA.

Recent Articles by Brian Cohen

5 Personal Traits of Great Leaders

Many C-suite insurance executives complain about how difficult it is to find leaders in their organization. Many people believe leadership can’t be taught. “You know it when you see it” is a common observation. Finding a consistent definition for leadership is difficult. How do you develop/teach/articulate a core set of traits of great leaders if […]

Agencies: Grow Sales AND Develop Staff

You’ve done the hard part building a successful insurance agency. But production has plateaued. So you focus on growth and spend less time in the office. This prevents you from overseeing your staff, and you begin to worry about what’s happening back at the office. It’s the biggest challenge owners of agencies face. How do […]

Agent: What’s Your Plan This Year?

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” I used to get that question all the time. I would say I wanted to be a doctor, a lawyer, a successful businessman. I always had an answer, but I never had a plan. I would have benefited a lot from having the person follow […]

How to Unleash Employee Talent

Your company’s financial performance is below plan. You need to act! The most common response is to cut costs to improve the bottom line or fire or reassign a senior executive to create a sense of urgency. But these actions create disruption and distraction at a time when the organization needs to be aligned and […]

Stop Tolerating Old Tech From Carriers

Waiting on hold. Faxing underwriting forms. Apologizing to customers for insurance-company errors. Sound familiar? Up until now, you and your staff accepted this conduct as the status quo. Your customers did, too. They won’t now! Today’s consumer expects a different experience. She expects to control her interaction with your agency on her terms, 24/7. This change […]

Spending on Agents Beats Spending on Ads

A recent research report published by Cliff Gallant and Matthew Rohrmann of Nomura Equity Research concludes that spending on advertising beats spending on insurance agents.  Once again, Wall Street gets it wrong. Their logic is flawed. The authors choose to focus only on advertising spending in 2013 and limit their analysis to the top-10 auto […]

Become a Brand Behemoth — Locally

Suppose you walked into a store to look for a new television. If the store only carried one brand, would you shop there? Of course not, but that’s just what today’s insurance behemoths want you to do when you buy insurance. With an abundance of information just a few key strokes away, today’s consumers demand […]

Data Analytics Comes of Age for Agents

Sitting down for lunch with one of our top independent agents, I asked him about his business.   “Things are great – we’re totally paperless now!” he responded triumphantly. “So what are you doing with all of the data you’re collecting?” I asked. “Oh, I’m too small to do any of that stuff,” he said with a […]

Go on Offense Using Social Media

The plane pushed back as I settled into the sports section of my local paper. Just as I was getting comfortable, the pilot made an announcement that our flight was going to be delayed for a short time. We ended up sitting on the tarmac for two hours. I missed my connection, and, to make […]

Future Is Bright for P&C Agents

The experts guaranteed that the Baylor and Alabama football teams would win their bowl games after the 2013 season. Both lost. Baylor was favored by a whopping 17 points over Central Florida but lost by 10, while Alabama was favored by 15 over Oklahoma but got crunched by 14.  Likewise, for decades, the “experts” have been betting against […]

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