Ageas Distribution and Development Director Chris Dobson shares his 10 dos and don’ts for BIBA 2017

Chris-Dobson-Ageas-Distribution-and-Development-Director

In all the years, I’ve been going to conferences, seminars and the like in our industry, some things never change – and I’m not talking about our name badges!

At every event, I know there’ll be someone I haven’t caught up with in ages.

That’s what’s so great about these get-togethers – we’re here to meet up and rediscover old connections, and of course make new ones. Just think about BIBA for a moment – the UK’s leading general insurance intermediary organisation.

You get to their annual conference, absolutely the biggest event of the year for our industry, and you start to see why they’re so good at what they do: they DO put the focus absolutely on people meeting people. Never mind what we do or don’t do every day, our jobs all involve getting to know people.

So…here’s my list of 10 dos and don’ts if, like me, you’re one of the many people who’ll be at BIBA on the 10 and 11 May:

Do...

Relax about not memorising where everyone is on the stand plan 

That’s the beauty of BIBA – everyone’s here. It’s all about making new connections. If you’re standing next to the bacon sandwiches though, we’re at the other end. Just saying.

Multitask as you’re making your way round venue 

We know you’re busy people. Take phone calls from clients, or the office, and prioritise the things that’ll push your relationships forward. That’s the kind of support we offer: things that’ll help you run your business, the way you want to.

When you’re ready, grab a brew with our crew 

Clearly our guys are some of the nicest people you’ll meet. Wave as you go past if there’s someone else you need to see first. We’d love to see you though – we’re on Stand D10, just inside the main entrance. I’d love to meet you in person, so come on over when you’re ready.

Share what you learn at all the conference sessions

Again, it’s the variety that brings us together at BIBA. I’m deadly serious, come and find me, tell me which session you enjoyed best and what impact you think it could have on brokers today – as a team, we’re all genuinely interested to hear your opinions.

Let us introduce ourselves 

I can’t stress this enough – BIBA is all about us getting to meet you, and you getting to meet us. You’ll have seen our new promise, ‘we’re the crew behind you’. It’s our approach to supporting brokers, not just at events like BIBA, but being on hand when you need us most.

Don’t...

Apologise for not being in touch until now

It’s great to see you! Let’s talk – and I’ll introduce you to the rest of the crew, too.

Say sorry for looking at my name badge

You’re running into hundreds of people you won’t have seen for months – I’ll double-check your name, you’ll check mine – and I’ll introduce you to the crew, too.

Apologise for not knowing what our position on the new Ogden rate is

The whole thing’s crazy. We agree with the ABI.

Feel you have to be ‘an Ageas broker’ to come and see us 

As I said, we’re on D10, right in front of you as you walk in. The crew would love to meet you, just to say Hi and talk about what *you’re* doing and what *you* want from providers like us.

Hide that goodie bag, come and get one of ours too!

It’s free stuff, what’s not to like? We’ll be handing out goodies too – come along, say hi, and tell us how your show’s going. We’ll pop our contact details into the bag too.

And finally, whether it’s catching up on an idea, talking about a business plan, mulling over things like the impact of IPT or even “how do I find the conference sessions from here?” – don’t forget the crew are here to help.

Remember, stand D10. We’re helpful like that. All you have to do is come over and say “Oh hi Chris…!”

And if you’d like to get in touch beforehand, you can connect with me on LinkedIn or follow the crew - I’ll be sharing my thoughts on key industry issues in the run-up to BIBA, to help you stay ahead of the game.

See you there!

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