Running a business is never an easy task, especially when dealing with an ever changing market. Below is a conversation we had with Shane Hogan, a local insurance broker in Canning Vale, WA. He outlines how he strives to understand the wider insurance market to help secure the right covers for his clients.
• What changes have you noticed with your business in the last 12 months?
Business is always challenging and will always continue to be challenging. I guess from my point of view, I have found a renewed motivation with the positive changes that have happened within the group. There seems to be a genuine feel of support with what I am trying to do and a real interest in wanting to see my business grow. That is important to me as it hasn’t all been smooth sailing from the beginning.
• What challenges have you faced in the last 12 months? How did you go about resolving them?
Honestly, I think for me there was a period of low self esteem and motivation. Sometimes even questioning if I was good enough to build a business or achieve the goals that I wanted to achieve. It maybe cliché but sometimes when you look up at a mountain you think “How the hell am I going to get there?” For me, there was two suggestions which I took on board which really helped. As a sole operator, it was suggested that I spend some time in the office of one of the other partners. I started doing this and continue to do so on a weekly basis. I really found hearing the industry related chatter around the office helped me refocus and allowed me to pick up little things that I could take back to my clients. The other was joining a business networking group. Doing this has put me in with like minded individuals, all looking to grow their business. It makes you want to get in on the success stories and lock away a few wins yourself. Of course it also opened the door to a few more potential clients. Don’t get me wrong, I still have moments where I falter a little and question myself, but I think I’m now more equipped to steady myself and refocus.
• How do you go through your busy life with running your own business?
It’s not easy and I still haven’t mastered it by any means. I guess it comes down to making a plan of what you want to do and when you are going to do it. If you are going to take time out during the day to take the kids to school or pick them up, then make sure you make it up somewhere. Even if it’s a 10 pm that night. I guess the other important thing I’ve learned is to learn how to stop work and start again tomorrow. There are always things to do so sometimes it’s easy to just keep going. But the problem is that your working day becomes one continuous working week and you’ll start to burn out. Don’t get me wrong as there will be times where something has to be done and you just have to do it. But that doesn’t have to be all the time.
• How does being a part of a large group help you place risks with the wider insurance market?
For me it’s the ability to pick the brains of all the partners and get their ideas of how to place something or where to place something. Let’s face it we all have varying amounts of experience and I’m confident that we can all learn from each there in some way to make sure we secure the right insurance covers for our clients.
• How do you link the BMX operation to your RP business? Are there ways to generate interest and referrals?
Just in case some of us don’t know, I have a BMX racing team here in Perth. Our riders vary in age from 8 years old to 22 years old with some being in the top 4 in Australia to others who are more in the development phase of their riding. Our riders travel all over Australia to ride with some traveling overseas to take on the worlds best. So my business owns the team and is also the major sponsor. This year I also sponsored the WA wide Superseries event in which the rides competed on 10 different tracks around WA including Kalgoorlie and Geraldton. I guess having the team and being involved in sponsorship helped get an awareness out there about what I do. A lot of the people involved in BMX racing have their own businesses so it was a great opportunity to speak to a lot of people and look at potential opportunities. Our Facebook page is Reliance Racing Development. Check us out and like our page.
To find out more about Shane Hogan and his expertise, visit his profile here.