How Good is that Lead You Bought?

Recently I received a “quote” on my homeowners from a direct seller. I hadn’t requested a quote, so this was clearly a direct mail solicitation. The problem is, it is not my home. It is our home and the “quote” was in my name only. In the State of Texas a deed for a home is in the name of both husband and wife, typically with the husband’s name being first.

Heap of computer paper

Pat Alexander Website Updates

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I have been working with the awesome Kim Woodbridge over the past few weeks to accomplish both some visual and structural updates to this website. My goals in the process were to:

  1. Move more important action items to the forefront of the site.
  2. Move from FeedBurner for subscribers to Aweber.
  3. To eliminate unneeded plugins.
  4. Implement better use of SEO on pages and blog posts.

Managing Criticism

This post is inspired by a friend on Facebook that posted a recipe she is trying out to meet her new nutritional needs due to a recent heart issue. Several people immediately criticized her for using fat free cheese. Since this is a very recent event that she is recovering from she is trying to find her way with the assistance of her physician and family to what is best for her health. A post she made follow the criticism showed that she had been hurt by this. This lady is not immune to criticism as she is a blogger, writer, speaker and teacher. But the way in which the particular comments were delivered were especially hurtful.

Crystal Bridges – Our Visit

I love art museums. Even better are those with great sculptures and awesome architecture. Crystal Bridges meets all of these expectations and was truly a great experience. When I saw a piece on TV about this new museum last year I knew we had to visit. It is located in Greenwood, AR which is about 2 hours north of where Gene’s oldest daughter and her family live .

Why Should You Attend a Social Media Workshop?

Yesterday I attended one of Mike Wise‘s Social Tech Boot Camps. When I added this event to our calendar, my husband asked why I needed to attend such a workshop? After all, I spend a lot of time involved in social technology, I work with agencies on their social media plans and best practices. The majority of the attendees a this particular session were involved in benefits coverages. That brought a whole different perspective for me based on their views verses those of the property and casualty sector of the industry.

Blogging for Engagement Not for Numbers

I recently posted a review on Dictapad for iPad Review. I wasn’t even aware of this app until a friend of my needed a solution for transcribing interviews. I went in search of such apps, read about them and felt that this was the best one available. I have since used the app to transcribe a recording from my Livescribe pen. It does exactly what you want it to. I knew that the post would be interesting to a very small audience. I wanted to show on a bigger scale that there are lots of solutions out there, you just need to search them out.


Consistency in Documentation

Part of what I do on a daily basis is write best practices documentation. While many say that perfection is not needed, I disagree in this instance. A big issue I have with documentation is consistency in terms. For example; you may refer to an insurance company as an insurance company or an insurance carrier. I am editing someone else’s document today. So far I have seen insurance company referred to as:

  • Company
  • Carrier
  • Insurance Company
  • Insurance Carrier

All of these were used in the same document to refer to a type of entity. A previous employer of mine taught me to always use Insurance Carrier to denote the Insurance Company. I am also specific about your insured. They may or may not actually be insured. I refer to them as your client. If they are a prospect and the workflow applies to them then they are so described.


Evernote for Project Management

My friend and technology guru, Steve Anderson, was an early adopter of Evernote. After a meeting in which he praised its uses I signed up. I tried it out from time-to-time. And, alas I abandoned it. Every time we would be at a meeting, I would say, “I just don’t get why I would use Evernote.” He would patiently explain why he found it such a big part of his daily routine and how it met so many of his needs. This has been going on for at least two years.

Now I wasn’t concerned about my information being in the cloud. I am a huge believer in the cloud. I work with agencies that use online agency management systems. I am a big user of Dropbox. Every document, picture and tune I have is in my Dropbox file. But a couple of weeks ago I found how Evernote could benefit me. What has changed?


Dictapad for iPad Review

Recently a friend asked if I was aware of an app for iPad for transcribing recorded interviews. He advised that the files could be MP3 or .wav files. For the younger crowd we used to have dictaphone machines. There was a foot pedal that let you stop the tap, back up and restart the tap. A check in Google shows that, in fact, dictaphone machines of a newer version are still available. However, that would not come anywhere close to meeting my friend’s needs. Everything for iPad my friend had tried didn’t have these capabilities. I began searching the iTunes apps. I read through several and settled on Dictapad as the best tool for the task at hand.


 Dictapad by Panchromatic, LLC

Outstanding PCR Clean-Up Challenge

It is not uncommon when working with my clients to find a whole bunch of follow-ups or un-posted items in their agency management system. Such is the case at one of my clients. During the committee meeting discussing the standards and process for ordering and checking endorsements we found that there were in excess of 100 un-posted Policy Change Requests (PCR). There was the usual moan and statement, yet another backlog to solve.

Challenge Doodles