At Relation, our culture is the source of our success and it begins with the strength of our people. Our Relation Rockstars series highlights the company’s most successful employees who are invested in helping to grow the company, excelling in their position and when producers, expanding their book of businesses. This month we spoke with Elissa Sanchez, a top-performing producer who attributes her professional growth to Relation’s entrepreneurial environment and support of work-life balance.
Elissa Sanchez is a producer for Relation’s Agribusiness practice out of its Pan American business unit, who lives and works in the Imperial Valley in Southern California. Elissa joined Relation in 2016, having previously enjoyed a career as an independent loss-control consultant. She quickly rose to be a top producer, earning internal recognition and accolades. However, as a successful entrepreneur in her own right, deciding to make the switch to being an employee was not an easy choice initially.
“When I was approached about becoming a producer at Relation, I was unsure. I had a successful consulting business and wasn’t sure I wanted to work for a company. And I didn’t know the insurance business. However, I eventually saw it as an opportunity to use my loss-control and training experience to grow into being a producer.”
Elissa credits the company’s supportive network of mentors who helped guide her through the transition as a core reason for her early success.
“I was immediately offered hands-on support from the leadership of my division as I learned the job. Even though I was an hour from the closest Relation office, I never felt alone. Whether it was being accompanied on my appointments, or getting my questions answered along the way, I had a team of colleagues who were always open and available to help me. It didn’t take long to feel like I had been part of Relation forever.”
Elissa also points to Relation’s strong culture of appreciation for all employees who support the company’s growth, not just the producers.
“I had only been working at Relation for a month when I was invited to the company’s STAW (Support Staff Appreciation Week) event. Each year for a week, Relation shows acts of gratitude and appreciation for the support teams who help on the back-end in the sales process. During this week, teams receive gifts of appreciation every day and the week culminates with a big appreciation dinner in a central location. Teams are brought in for the event so producers stay behind and manage the offices for them while they get to relax and celebrate. The experience was mind-blowing and right then was when I knew that this was the company I would want to work for until I retired. Three years later, I still feel that way.”
Core to Relation’s culture is also empowering its employees through an entrepreneurial work environment coupled with work-life-balance, and Elissa noted, “As a working mother, flexibility is important. Relation gives me the autonomy to use my strengths to build my book of business while working the hours that make the most sense for me and the clients I serve. That confidence in me is empowering.”
For people interested in pursuing a career as a producer in insurance, Elissa attributes much of her success to her ability to tap into her skills outside the industry, and think out-of-the-box.
“I don’t just focus on insurance. I bring my experience in loss control into every conversation and also look for other ways to be a resource to the companies I serve. Whether it’s educating myself on new laws and regulations that could cost employers money, or bundling in compliance or training seminars, bringing these services into the conversation sets me apart from my competitors. It also helps me to become a valuable partner, not just a salesperson. This connecting the dots approach has opened the door to me on almost every occasion, and continues to be a strong source of referrals for new leads.”
Elissa is just one of the self-starting, innovative and committed individuals who continue to shape Relation’s unique culture and drive our growth. If you are interested in becoming part of our team, we’d love to hear from you. Please check out our careers page for our current openings.