A picture of a special
home, an SUV and a group of horses are among the photos that he can
look up from his desk and see whenever he wants. They are pictures
of goals that he has set for himself, and he uses them as well as
pictures of family to keep himself oriented and on track to make
those pictures a reality.
He has other goals, and when he finds
just the right pictures to showcase those additional desires, they
will join the rest.
To be certain, Montgomery is driven to success, but it almost
didn't happen the way it has.
A Lincoln native, Montgomery started out in the insurance
industry at an independent agency in Woodstock, Ill. In a humorous
tone, Montgomery explained that he had recently purchased several
nice suits and had no reason to wear them, so he became an insurance
agent. He values the time he spent working up north, stating he
learned the insurance business from the "Michael Jordans" of the
insurance world and was having solid success. He missed his family
and friends, however, and he finally decided he needed to come back
Not certain what he would do next, one could consider the next
event either good fortune or opportunity or arguably destiny. In the
spring of 2007, he received a call from the Farmers Insurance people
stating they would like to have 10 minutes of his time to talk to
him about the insurance agency opening in Lincoln. It was after this
meeting that Montgomery decided to work with Farmers.
As the local agency, which Montgomery took ownership of in July
of 2007, nears its first anniversary, the results show that both he
and Farmers made a wise decision back then.
Olivia Wells, agency producer and office manager, wanted to point
out a special award the agency recently received. The blue
crystalline award is sparingly given out by Farmers Insurance to
only the best, most productive of the new agencies in their national
structure. Montgomery explained the award when he advised that the
agency currently is writing 20 new policies a week.
[to top of second column]
What makes the number of new policies all the more impressive is
that Montgomery said, "Probably 90 percent of our business is from
referrals right now." Wells agreed, saying, "The referral business
alone is keeping us really busy." Both were quick to point out that
doesn't mean they aren't happy and willing to help anyone with their
insurance needs, but the referral numbers show the agency is being
well-received in the community.
As Wells went out to explain a new policy to a client, Montgomery
wanted to talk about his company,
Farmers Insurance. Farmers, which doesn't do the advertising
many of the other insurance companies do, is the third-largest home
and auto insurance company in the country. Montgomery is licensed to
sell all lines of insurance, however, and believes an important kind
of policy he is expanding his efforts on is the Medicare supplement
plans the agency offers. Montgomery also made it a point to explain
how he and Wells pride themselves on customer service and not just
on selling insurance.
Like many businesses, Montgomery is concerned about the economy.
"People need proper insurance, but when it comes to a choice between
putting bread on the table or keeping an insurance policy in effect,
most people will take the bread on the table every time," he said.
He looks at a tough market as a challenge rather then a deterrent,
Montgomery is bullish about his career decision. "If I can make a
good living and help people get the insurance they need and save
them money, well that's a win-win for everyone."
In the months to come, new pictures will no doubt be added to
Montgomery's office wall. It is probable that a few of them will
also be taken down, with the real thing taking their place.
[By MIKE FAK]
Readers can find more of Mike Fak's writing at