For this edition of CTM Spotlight, we had the opportunity to speak with one of our newest agents, Ursula Goudsbloem. We had the chance to talk about what inspired her to join the team at CTM, why she takes the extra time to ask questions and why she doesn’t believe an Insurance Agent is a sales position.
- You are fairly new to CTM. How have you found the transition to CTM and the Mutual Insurance world?
I couldn’t have had a warmer welcome! CTM has such great core values and made me feel at home with my work family.
- What first got you interested in the insurance industry?
I was offered a job as an Office Manager at an Insurance Company over 15 years ago and have been working in the industry ever since. Fairly quickly, I realized that Insurance isn’t as scary as many people think. It is actually a very useful product when properly understood and applied.
I think it is too bad that insurance generally has such a bad reputation. Once clients understand what insurance is and how coverage responds in a claims situation (within the policy’s limits), things don’t look as bad anymore. This is why I enjoy listening and talking to people, and taking the time to learn what kind of insurance they need and trying to find the best protection for them.
- When we initially discussed doing this interview, you said that you didn’t view Insurance Agents as a sales job. Can you elaborate on that?
I believe you sell cars, homes, clothing and computers, but when it comes to insurance, you are essentially handing over a promise to protect the policyholder should they sustain a loss.
As I mentioned earlier, my colleagues and I listen to our clients and advise them based on our expertise and knowledge about the limits and coverages that will fit their specific needs. There is no pressure on me to “sell,” yet I always maintain a healthy ambition to provide growth to the company.
Sometimes, I will need to discuss with my clients that they are underinsured, which can happen for many reasons. It may scare them initially, but once we review proper limits and coverages and explain why it is so important to be insured to value, I leave my clients with peace of mind – and there is no (sales) price tag to that.
- What is one thing you would want someone to know about working at CTM?
I want the people in our service area to know that CTM doesn’t just offer great products/coverages but that CTM is also very community-minded. We run an initiative year-round called CTM Care, and the mandate of CTM Care is to provide support to our local communities to ensure they survive and thrive.
Healthy growth is needed for a company to stay in business, however, it is really incredible how the Mutuals value their local communities and give back. Community support and protecting their local communities is a top priority of CTM.
- At CTM, we like to talk about living out our values of Kindness, Respect, Integrity, Relationships and Agility. Which of those values resonates most with you daily at CTM?
ALL of them! One doesn’t really go without the other. Since the world is ever-changing and sudden and accidental things happen, we need to have the agility to respond accordingly.
- We know you can often be found at the arena or on the trails, but what are your favourite local businesses and why?
Our family favorites include the Union Pub, Spa Date, Hair by Sarah, Foodland, Home Hardware, Komoka Massage Therapy and Komoka Physiotherapy and Wellness. Now that spring/summer is here, we absolutely love having the Gingerbread Bakery and Brainfreeze within walking or biking distance for a treat during or after work! Locals run all the companies (even Timmies) 😊 and have greatly supported our school and sports clubs. The DelKoBrydge Optimist Club is another great local business that I would want to highlight.
- You often say to clients that you ask a lot of questions so that if they have a loss, they won’t have any questions about what is covered. What is one question you wish that policyholders would ask?
I wish they would ask how we can protect what is most important to them. It could be their precious trailer, the income of their staff, or the combine used at the farm. If they ask – we know what our job is: to find the right coverage for them. Many times I not only ask the client a lot of questions, I like to ask our Underwriting team for their suggestions as well. This way, I can ensure I have done my best to serve that client.
- Do you currently have a favourite TV show or podcast?
LOL. When would I do that? I have no time! I love listening to all kinds of music anytime … anywhere, including my daughter’s clarinet! When I do watch TV, it is usually Dutch TV. I do really enjoy movies … that way, I “have to” sit and slow down.
- If you could only have one meal for the rest of your life. What would it be?
Hot fries with mayo! Although sushi and pizza share a very close 2nd place. Wine is also a must!
- What is one traditional meal from the Netherlands that you wish was also popular in Canada?
Smoked Eel (delish on Melba toast!)
- Thank you for taking the time to talk with me today, giving us some insight into your perspective on insurance, and helping us get to know you better. What is one final message you want to leave us with today?
Don’t be afraid of insurance, and always ask lots of questions. We are here to help and want to make sure you have the peace of mind that comes with personalized service and personalized coverage.