Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Quacking Like A Duck

His name was John Amos. He's most recognized as the original founder of AFLAC. Most people know all about AFLAC. They know that they sell insurance. If nothing else, they know that a duck represents the company. What people don't know is that the company started out of a bedroom. The man in that bedroom was John Amos. He was pumping insurance policies all over the state of Georgia back in 1955.

It wasn't working. John was a great salesman, but he knew that his insurance was the same insurance as the next guy. There was no difference. Just a different sales pitch. So John decided to sale something different. John started selling cancer insurance. That's when John's life changed. That's when AFLAC started to make money.

But nobody noticed. Everybody else just kept selling the same stuff. The few that did notice scoffed at the idea. They considered John just another flash in the pan. After all, their way of doing things was the way it was supposed to be done. Meanwhile, John worked his way into all 48 states within the continental U.S. Later, he worked his way across the globe into Japan. And eventually he found himself banging the gavel at the New York Stock Exchange.

Yes, the insurance industry finally woke up. You can purchase cancer insurance from just about anybody today. But it was too late. John had created a global company that now had a customer base ready to buy other forms of insurance. And that's what you have today. A $22 billion dollar company. With millions of customers. All because of one great idea.

All because one man decided to change his industry. And that's where it starts. One simple idea. So simple that anybody can do it. But so different that nobody is willing to do it.

Reminds me of a little maid service company in northwest Florida called Two Maids & A Mop. Reminds me of an idea called pay for performance.

Sure, we only have three offices and fifty employees. But not too long ago, we only had one office and four employees. Growth can be exponential when you're an industry innovator.

Keep sleeping. Your tired, old way of doing things is our greatest strength.

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