There can often be tension between account managers and producers. This can be caused by a combination of workloads and wage disparity between the two roles. If anyone is finding that they are shouldering the majority of the work and not being fairly compensated for their efforts, it’s only natural that they may start to feel underpaid and underappreciated.
If you find yourself in this position, it’s important to address these concerns with your supervisor. However, before you have that conversation there are a few things you’ll want to consider:
1. Take time to find out how your compensation compares to peers. Do some research with recruiters to find out what others in your local area with the same role and responsibilities are being paid. With this information, you will be able to understand whether your current compensation falls in the low end, healthy median, or perhaps on the top end of the pay scale.
If you are at the top end, there may not be much room for growth in your current role. However, if this is not the case and you find you are on the low to median end of the pay scale, you now have the information you need to build your case for a better raise. Knowing your income potential based on the current market is powerful information to take back to your employer when discussing options for increased compensation.
2. Don’t use the “us versus them” tactic when it comes to who may be doing more work between you as the account manager and the producer. While situations like this can certainly be frustrating, it is important to recognize and respect the producer’s position in the process in the same way you want the producer to respect the work you do each day.
Rather, be prepared to speak to the value you bring to the clients and the agency. Provide specific examples that demonstrate how your performance is above and beyond what is expected. It is much better to earn a raise based on your own merits rather than by speaking poorly of the producer.
3. Write down your income goals. Know what you’re making now and where you’d ideally like your salary to be. Come prepared to discuss ideas on other responsibilities you could take on in order to reach that income goal. There may be an option for you to pursue and manage new business and earn commission in the process.
Once you have done the homework and prepared your talking points, you are ready to review your concerns and ideas with your supervisor. By taking these steps, you have laid the groundwork for a productive conversation that will generate a positive outcome for everyone involved.
For more information on this topic, check out the full episode of The Independent Agent podcast below.