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“RESILIENCE: Braving the future together” is the theme of the first-ever online Life Insurance Congress of the Philippines and MDRT Day that is happening on 7-9 October 2020.

The event is organised by the Life Underwriters Association of the Philippines (LUAP) and the Philippines Million Dollar Round Table Membership and Communication Committee. Asia Advisers Network is the official media partner.

What are the highlights that attendees can look forward to?

Willison: The First Philippine Life Insurance Virtual Convention is a combination of two major events annually held in the country by the Life Underwriters Association of the Philippines (LUAP) and the MDRT MCC Philippines, these are the Philippine Life Insurance Congress (PLIC) and the MDRT Day.

The PLIC was originally scheduled on March 31 and the MDRT Day on August 6, both cancelled because of the pandemic. The team had been discussing using technology to reach a broader base audience. Previously, the physical nature of events would limit participants to within the nearby cities around Metro Manila. One bright spot this pandemic has provided is that plans for digitalisation were fast-tracked, and thus was born. By doing our convention virtually, we not only have the capability to reach financial advisers from all corners of the Philippines, but this also allows us to narrow the distance between all the possible speakers and us worldwide. 

The convention boasts speakers from all over the globe to provide financial advisers a top-notch learning opportunity. We have brought together four MDRT Presidents, best-selling authors and motivational speakers, and several industry practitioners to share their knowledge and best practices to provide attendees with tools that could help them achieve their 2020 goals. We believe that the pandemic should not be an excuse not to go after our goals initially set at the start of the year.

Lastly, one unique feature of our convention is its hybrid nature. Our convention features a combination of plenary sessions and on-demand sessions. Understanding the peculiarity of our financial advisers, around 90% being part-timers, attending learning events is always dependent on the schedules, whether it would take time away from work, or whether taking time away from work is even possible. 

The plenary sessions will follow a scheduled programme in the mornings of the event. This aims to provide full-time financial advisers with a boost to start their day off. The on-demand sessions will allow all advisers to listen to the speaker of their choosing, at a time more convenient for them. 

For advisers looking to excel in their career, what are the initiatives and resources LUAP has in place to help them?

Apart from the PLIC and the MDRT Day which are joint projects by LUAP and MDRT Day, LUAP runs several other learning sessions during the course of the year.  

We start the year off with a free sales clinic aimed at encouraging advisers to have a running start for the year. We have the sales mastery series aimed at enhancing the different aspects of the sales processes of financial advisers. We also have rookie sessions realising the rapidly growing financial advisor population.

Our website is currently being upgraded to include various resources taken from our over 20 years of doing conventions. Our library of over 500 videos will surely provide our members with hundreds of ideas. But we understand that everything now has to be accessible at the palm of one’s hand, which is why our mobile app, aptly called LUApp, will soon be available as well.

Finally, LUAP aims to take on a bigger role in the life of the Filipino Financial Adviser. Not only will we work to continue to provide these learning opportunities, we will also take on an active role in the betterment of the lives of the financial advisers. Some things we will put focus and resources on will relate to taxation and totally take-home pay.

Do you have any advice for financial advisers amid the coronavirus pandemic?

I believe challenges are brought upon, not to harm us or to prevent us from reaching our dreams and aspirations, but to actually help us grow to ensure we reach them and maybe reach them faster. This pandemic has caused us to change a lot of our ways, ways of doing business, ways of living our social life, but it has also helped us enhance a lot of things.

Efficiency: Pre-pandemic, half of our time was spent running around, from place to place, to either meet our clients or to attend meetings. But due to the lockdowns implemented, we were all forced to enhance our way of meeting people through digital platforms, essentially saving us time. Time: we can use it to increase productivity, spend with our loved ones, or spend for ourselves. 

You see, the pandemic did change what we should be doing. Prospecting didn’t change. Setting meetings didn’t change. The closing didn’t change. It mainly changed how we should be doing things. And hopefully, we are doing things efficiently.   

How do you see the future of financial advisers in the Philippines?

There is still a long way to go for the life insurance industry and profession in the Philippines. With a very low penetration rate, the Insurance Commission, insurance companies and insurance agents have to work together more to ensure more Filipinos are financially literate and insured. It is said that the Philippines is one of the countries to watch out for in the next few decades. The growth potential of the country is tremendous, with over half of the population entering the workforce during the next few years. It is because of both these reasons, low insurance penetration and high growth potential, that I see a big income growth potential for the Filipino financial advisers. We just have to put the work into upgrading ourselves and preparing ourselves for when that time comes.

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LUA Phils

Author LUA Phils

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