In this column from Insurance Journal’s archives, Jim Ruta recaps some of the best sales advice from the 2019 Canada Sales Congress. 

To become a US Navy Marine, you must become comfortable with the reality of being uncomfortable. It’s the same for life insurance advisors. They must become comfortable with the reality that the key determinants of success are uncomfortable to do. All of them. For everyone. 

Like: Talking to strangers. Making appointments with strangers about a topic they don’t want to discuss. Talking to strangers about buying life insurance. Asking strangers to buy life insurance. Asking strangers to introduce you to other strangers… 

The first thing you discover at the Canada Sales Congress is that these ICONs speaking don’t have superpowers. They are ordinary people who use the basics to be brilliant. They have become comfortable with being uncomfortable. Like my friend and client Van Mueller says, all top advisors learned to do what they do, and so can you. Success is a learned skill! 

To help you learn their best ideas, here are my top takeaways from the 2019 Canada Sales Congress:

  • Make your purpose greater than your pain. It’s the essence of dealing with the uncomfortable. Sol Hicks
  • We trade our health for our wealth every day, but if our health fails, there is never enough wealth to make it better. Be a “financial fire extinguisher” to help your clients put out their financial fires. Darren Ulmer 
  • Do the hard work you must do to get comfortable with the uncomfortableness of rejection early in your career so you can excel later. Samuel Waxman
  • We make prospects uncomfortable with their state of affairs today, so they never have to be uncomfortable with their personal protection tomorrow. Six months of disability can wipe out 10 years of saving. Sell income replacement. Marg Manias
  • The three things to do to be powerful in an interview:
    1. Ask Questions. 2. Answer Questions and 3. Never answer statements – you only agree or acknowledge statements. Vincent D’Addona
  • Financial planning is like building a hockey team. It can’t be all financial offence – accumulating money. It also can’t all be financial defense either – Protecting income and wealth. It must be a combination of both. Use your own insurance plan as a model for your prospects. Dana “kills” off her husband many times a week to show her prospects the power of insurance. People identify with her situation and make the leap to their own plans. Dana Mitchell 
  • Being heard creates an emotional connection between you and your client and is necessary to help them buy what they need. Curtis Cloke 
  • If you read 50 books about basketball, would you still be any good at basketball? Not likely. The only thing makes you better at basketball is practicing and playing basketball. It’s the same in the life insurance business. You must practice to be good. Learn 8 to 10 great questions to inspire your prospects and clients. The ability to inspire is your most important power. Van Mueller 
  • Be a “farmer” in the business. Plant seeds with young prospects and then grow with them. Over time, those cases will become larger. Later, you will reap a harvest when your crops came in. Disability is a great product because it forces regular client contact and that presents more sales opportunities. Lorne Schecter 
  • Dedicate one hour per day to cold call on small business for group benefits and then chase down individual leads. “Can I leave this flyer? It includes dental coverage for just one person.” Mike Danks 
  • Build a successful life insurance operation inside a general insurance operation by mirroring the client expectations they have learned from their general brokers. Make buying as quick and painless as possible. Follow-up! Ryan Riffel 
  • Take the time to educate yourself on the “nitty gritty” of contracts, concepts, how financial pictures work together, clients, the market and the competition. Then you can execute with excellence and always in the client’s best interests. Justine Zavitz 
  • Your assets can only end up in one of three places – Your Family, The Government or Charity. You can only pick two of the three. Which two do you choose? Mark Halpern 
  • Be different. Impress your clients with an actual newspaper from the day they were born, Retirement Business Cards or a custom policy box to hold their important papers. Mike Morrow 

Our 2019 CSC speakers worked smart, long and hard to achieve their success. They practiced. Brilliant success is a learned skill. If you learn and practice these ideas, you can catapult your success to the next echelon. 

This column by renowned advisor coach Jim Ruta was first published in the June/July 2019 edition of Insurance Journal magazine.

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Jim Ruta’s mission is simple – to preserve, promote and propel the financial advisor business. A former insurance advisor and executive manager of a 250-advisor agency, Jim is a highly regarded coach, author, podcaster and keynote speaker. He has spoken 4 times at the MDRT Annual Meeting including the Main Platform. Jim Ruta is an Executive Coach and Keynote speaker specializing in life insurance advisors and leaders. He works with top advisors around the world and re-energizes audiences with his deep insight and passion. 

If you have a question for Jim, you may send an email to [email protected]