JACKSONVILLE, FLA. — As International Women’s Day approaches Sunday, March 8, Brightway Insurance recognizes the positive influence women have had on the business since its inception 11 years ago. The company, where one in three franchise locations are led by women, earned a spot on Franchise Business Review’s list of Top 50 Franchises for Women two years in a row.
“Whether you’re an entrepreneur seeking a successful business venture, a seasoned Insurance Agent who wants to open your own agency or a sales professional seeking great career opportunities, Brightway exists to help everyone associated with the business reach their potential,” said Brightway Chief of Staff, Leslie Wright, who Franchise Business Review recognized as one of the Women Leading Franchising.
“We’re thrilled that women make up 64% of our corporate office workforce supporting our franchise locations and lead 36% of our franchises,” said Brightway President and CEO, Michael Miller. “We also have three incredibly smart and talented leaders who are women in vital roles on our Executive Team.”
Some of Brightway’s female Insurance Agents also rank among the best in the business. Three women earned the $1 Million Producer award at the company’s annual awards ceremony in January.
When asked, “What career advice would you give other women?” below are responses from some of Brightway’s female rock stars.
“Regardless of what you do, be curious. To be clear, you can probably do just about any job without being curious; just by doing what you’re told to do or what you know is expected of you. A job only turns into a passion, in my opinion, when you get curious and find out that there’s so much more than meets the eye. Then, as you dig in, you will find that you can begin connecting what were seemingly disparate dots in the organization and make an amazing difference, producing much different (and better) outcomes for whatever organization you’re working for,” said Wright.
“Always believe in yourself and question everything. Asking questions creates knowledge and understanding. One thing I’ve learned from being a working mom of three young children is that women are capable of anything if you just work hard and keep moving forward, even when all you really want to do is just take a quick nap,” said Brightway’s Vice President of Accounting Operations, Jess Spendley, who the Jacksonville Business Journal recognized as a Money Master.
“Comparison is the thief of joy; and joy is a critical component of personal success. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to work, live and win like everyone else. When you are able to find and cultivate joy in the progress of your work and relationships, then you are truly successful,” said Rachel Davidson, Owner of Brightway, The Rachel Davidson Agency in Dothan, Alabama.
“Make connections with other women and seek their input and advice. Find a mentor and then be a mentor to other women. Find those women who support and encourage you. Also, be open to new opportunities and trust your instincts even if the new opportunity is scary because those are the most worthwhile opportunities,” said Leslie Redler, Owner of Brightway, The Redler Agency in Valley Stream, New York.
“When you have a dream that has been burning for a long time, if possible, make the leap to pursue your dream. With hard work, persistence and determination your dream can become a reality. Believe in yourself, surround yourself with mentors and people who encourage you. You will never know what your real potential is until you step out with courage and faith to follow your dream. It will be emotional and difficult along the way, but as you walk your new path you will be surprised to learn the many adventures you had been missing. The rewards and personal gratification of doing what you love and have dreamt of will far outweigh the many sacrifices you made along the way. Go for it!” said Ashley Doebbeling, Owner of Brightway, The Doebbeling Agency in Fort Collins, Colorado.
“Don’t fall into the trap of accepting what somebody offers you. Negotiate your terms. Figure out what works best for you and then ask for it,” said Erika Broom, Agent at Brightway, The Canty Agency who earned Brightway’s $1 Million Producer award three years in a row.
“Never settle for less. The sky is the limit. You get out, what you put in. Always be the best at everything you do in life, and you will succeed. It doesn’t matter that you are a woman, all you need is confidence and you can do just as much as anyone else,” said Kim Zanfini, Agent at Brightway, The Zanfini Family Agency who earned Brightway’s $1 Million Producer award.
“Do the job before you get the job. If you’re always looking for ways to go above and beyond, you’re not only standing out to your peers and leadership, but you’re also developing character. It’s easy to be promoted if you’re already doing the job where you’re at,” said Augusta Storey, Unit Lead in Brightway’s Customer Service Center who was named Brightway’s Employee of the Year.
Brightway’s corporate office staff provides expertise and support in areas including Customer Service, Accounting, Marketing, Distribution, Business Analytics, Carrier Appointments, Licensing, Onboarding, Training, Hiring and Retaining personnel. The company’s signature after-the-sale service empowers franchisees to focus on new business sales and provides their customers the personalized service they deserve.
About Brightway Insurance
Brightway Insurance is a national property/casualty insurance distribution company with more than $652 million in annualized written premium, making it one of the largest Personal Lines agencies in the U.S.
Brightway’s focus is on producing Win, Win, Win outcomes for consumers by offering customized insurance solutions and for people wishing to sell insurance by providing business opportunities that span from single Agent to multi-unit enterprises. Regardless of the path taken, Brightway provides the support necessary to consistently outsell other insurance agents.
Brightway got its start in 2008 and has since grown to more than 900 people in 203 offices across 22 states serving customers in all 50 states.