“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, all the King’s horses, and all the King’s men, couldn’t put poor Humpty back together again.”

Remember Humpty? Of course you do. Every child learns this rhyme, and every adult teaches it to the next generation. But do any of us ever stop to think about what it means?

A couple of weeks ago I had breakfast with a close friend who lost literally everything he owns in a tornado. For over a year he has been trying to put his physical life back together. He won’t be finished for years. Really, like Humpty, he’ll never be “back together again”.

This is reality for our customers who suffer a catastrophic loss.

What is the role of Humpty’s insurance agent? Isn’t it to do a better job than the King’s horses and men, and at least try to put him together again? Of course it is! What the story of the nursery rhyme teaches me is that everything that could be done for Humpty was done. Do we, as agents, do that for our customers? Or do we just report claims?

I learned, from talking to my friend over the last year, that putting your life back together is hard and the process is long. It reminds me as an agent that I should keep talking with, offering support to and helping my customers who have suffered a loss for a long time. Until they are back together again.

Do you and I have a process for this? Does our agency have a way to keep up with customers from destruction to wholeness? Do we talk to our customers regularly through the ordeal? Hold their hands? Offer solace along with the money?

I don’t think, from my experience, that many of us do this very well. And we can all probably do better. We are in the business of putting Humpty back together again. We should be better than all the King’s horses and all the King’s men.

Something to think about.

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