The True Importance of Training: Adjustments in Life Podcast (S2 E3)

In this episode, Alan explains the true importance of taking advantage of the training offered and the impact of what it can do for you when deployed. Alan also explains the training offered at and how you can set yourself apart by taking the courses. If you have struggled with getting deployed or have deployed, failed, and are looking for the right direction to move, this is the episode for you!


TAG Licensing:

TAG CE Courses:

TAG Training Opportunities:



Xactimate Training:



Alan Olson: Well, hello adjusters and welcome back to another episode of adjustments in life. As always, I am your host, Alan Olson. And I am not with a partner today, Jason Dyson did not make it into the studio today to record with us.

So we’re going to kind of let you know sorry, where we didn’t get a new episode launched, there was a few things that took place that I was a little under the weather with COVID and didn’t really feel like getting into the studio and recording anything.

On top of that we did have an episode that we had recorded previously, that due to lack of technical knowledge, we could not get that episode to launch. So we greatly apologize for skipping last week.

But I hope you did get a chance to go back and listen to one of our most popular episodes of the first season. And that was crashing your first deployment. If any of you are listening now and did not get a chance to listen to that I highly suggest you listen to that.

Good friend of mine, Mr. Randon McGehee that went through the TAG school and ended up getting deployed and did an excellent job, has literally worked himself to a consistent process of not getting any time off. And yes, if you’re good at what you do, that will be a difficult thing for some of you to do is get that time off.

Randon is… I think he is home right now, I just talked to him the other day, but he is doing exceptionally well. And he can get a lot of information off of what he had to share during that episode that he did with us.

If you get a chance, listen to that very good episode, I want to say real quick that we had a TAG training and licensing class here at the end of January. And it was a fantastic class, we had really good attendance, the students all did exceptionally well, probably one of the highest ranking classes that we’ve had in test scores.

So congrats to all the people that passed the certification and got licensed through that course. And they’re well on their way through their training to get started in this wonderful field of adjusting.

And that’s probably the main topic I want to talk about today is understanding the importance of the training that’s offered. I know that there’s a lot of folks out there that are in need of training.

And if you get in this business and stay in it long enough, you’re going to go to storms and you’re going to see hundreds of people come into this industry and hundreds of people fail coming into this industry just for the sake that they do not have just a small amount of training to get them started, where they understand what their job is when they get.

That’s huge. Just a little bit of knowledge coming into it to give you an idea of what you’re actually there to do can make you or break you in this industry.

So, let’s start with this.

There’s a few different ways to enter the industry. Okay, there’s a few different ways you can get started as an adjuster. Okay, this is probably… This number one example is probably going to be the most common thing for folks to try to do, but it’s also the most common way to fail.

A lot of folks that want to get into this industry, they go get in adjusters license, and then they sit and wait for somebody to call they don’t make the effort to contact the firm’s, they don’t make the effort to get additional training.

They don’t know they’re not being led so they don’t know exactly what to do and how to get started. And so consequently they pay the money to go get licensed and they show up at a few CE hour events that maybe guide you along.

I see a lot of folks that show up at flood trainings, even though they’re brand new to adjusting, which is a great way to get CE hours and get good education, but most of you will probably never work flood or probably won’t get an opportunity to work flood until you’re 5 to 7 years into the industry.

And I think it’s a requirement for you to be a five year adjuster previously, before being able to handle any flood claims.

Again, that’s probably the most common thing that happens is, is people get licensed and then can’t figure out from there what to do, or they get advised, but they’re not sure they can spend the money.

There’s a wide variety of reasons that could keep somebody from getting anywhere when they get to that point, okay, just having the license is…. It’s just the starting point, that’s all you do, you have to have the license to get started.

And we say that… You will constantly hear us say that, in this podcast, in any of The Adjuster Guy advertising or whatever we post, getting licensed is just the starting point.

Then you have adjusters that get their license, they take additional training, they find people to ride along with, they get set up with all the portals, with all the different firms and they go in and they take advantage of the trainings and different certifications that are offered and anything they can get their hands on.

Some of them do it over a month to two month period, some of them may take six months to a year to absorb all the training that they can possibly get. This is actually a very, very good way to do it. Okay, this is what’s going to make you as an adjuster the most successful.

Now there is a third way and we’ll hit it real quick. And we’ll come back because there’s another third way that’s commonly used, you have to know somebody, or you have to have somebody that’s in the industry that knows you and wants to pull strings for you and get you started.

And that does happen for some people, very few but that does happen for some people, they just know somebody that’s out there, they call them and they say, “Hey, I’m going to get licensed, can you get me in?”

That person makes a phone call and boom, they’re out on a deployment. And they’re with their friend and their friends walking them through, and they get them through the first couple of claims and boom, they’re off and running, and that’s how they get started in the industry, I’m not going to tell you that doesn’t happen, because it does. And part of this business is who you know.

So if you know somebody you can get in and get yourself going without having to put a huge investment into a lot of training.

But let’s go back to that. Because the training is going to be what sets you apart. Like I said, the most common way for people getting into this industry is coming in and just getting a license and then trying to go to work from there.

If you’re willing to go take additional training, if you’re willing to go ahead and get set up with all the firms. Take whatever online training they offer. Take any of the certifications they offer.

If you’re willing to put forward an investment, even if it costs you money, pay somebody to go ride along with them and shadow them and see how the inspection process works. See what it’s like to be in the field.

Observe the different tools you need, find out what it takes to do the job that you’re trying to do. That’s going to set you apart in today’s time. I understand that everybody’s transitioning into this career because they see an opportunity to come in and make money.

That’s been the key thing that’s gotten everybody to get involved in the field of adjusting Nobody I know went to high school and or is it little kid said, “hey, when I grew up, I want to be a claims adjuster.” Nobody said that.

I think that people… Well, I know…. I know that people see this industry as a place that you can go in with a very small investment and make a substantial income. And it is it’s been that way for everybody I know.

This is the only trade this is the only business that I’m aware of that you can make less than a $2500 investment and have a potential to make $100,000 a year. This is the only one I know.

I don’t know any other business that you can join in or become part of that takes a very small investment to get a very large outcome. But with that being said just the licensing is not enough. You need to have some type of training again $1,000 worth of training $1,500 worth of training.

Even if you spend three to $5,000 worth of training can you afford to pay 03 to $5,000 and invest into tools, equipment and training for the potential to make $100,000 in a year’s time, I think that’s outstanding. Any day of the week, I’ll trade $5,000 for $100,000, if the potentials there to do it, any day of the week.

So it’s very important for you to understand the training that is necessary in order for you to go out there, set yourself apart from every other adjuster in the field, here’s my recommendation. And I know that some of you will not end up doing this, I know that some of you have already have a way that you’re working on.

And that’s what’s going to get you there. I don’t have the end all, cure all diagnosis for getting yourself deployed and making a mint in the adjusting business, but I can tell you firsthand what worked for me. And I can tell you firsthand what’s working for 90% of the people that have come to the adjuster guy for training and licensing.

Here’s my recommendation and here’s why.

There’s a lot of training available to you, whether it be online, in person with a friend, there are several ways to get an opportunity to train.

If you do that pre deployment, if you take advantage of all the training that you can get, when you set foot on site for your very first deployment, you’re not going to be guessing at what you’re supposed to do, you’re not going to be hounding your managers to say, I don’t know what I’m looking at, you’re not going to show up.

And this is most important, because this does happen. You’re not going to show up for your first deployment saying, where’s my computer? Aren’t you going to give me a ladder, or to go even further than that? Oh, you mean, I got to get on a roof, these are things you should already know, and these are things you should already have addressed.

And you should know what your job is, when you get there. You cannot be reliant upon all the managers to train you when you get there. That’s not what they’re there to do.

They’re there to assist you and help you walk through situations that you may not be comfortable or as familiar with, they’re not there to train you on how to do the job you’re there to do, and you already need to know how to do that. And that’s the importance of getting the training you need before you get there.

Getting this training, pre-deployment is going to immediately set you apart from 80% of the adjusters out there. I mean that with all sincerity, when I was managing, I could tell immediately when somebody came in the door that had previous knowledge or had been learning and taking trainings before they got there, they stuck out like a sore thumb.

And when I saw their files start coming in, those were the people I was able to work with in order to fluently get their claims moving through the system. If you didn’t have a clue, and you didn’t have any idea of what your job was, when you got there, I didn’t always have time to help you.

Because I had 30 people working for me that all had to get their files through that day, I had to pick and choose which I could work with in which I could keep files moving along with. And sometimes if you had no clue you’re the one that suffered, you’re the one that didn’t get the attention you needed, because we didn’t have time to get to everybody.

So we had to vet who we could help, and who for lack of better words, we couldn’t help at the moment in order to get things moving along.

Just another example, another small example would be during slow times, there’s two different times a year for claims. There’s the busy times when there’s hundreds of deployments out there.

And there’s the slow times when there’s just a few adjusters needed. During those slow times, there’s just a few adjusters needed. And all firms want to constantly try to add new resources.

So they’re always going to look even during the slow times for somebody that’s relatively new, or is new, and give them a chance, if that’s you, they pick you, you’re going to be able to take the knowledge that you’ve already instilled from the trainings and from the classes that you’ve taken, and show them that you have put an investment forward pre deployment.

And when you get there, you’re going to do well because of that.

So they’re going to see, hey, we grabbed this new person, they came in, and they did an excellent job. They had a really good idea what they were doing when they got there. And so next time we have another deployment ready, let’s let them have another shot. Let’s keep them moving along.

If you didn’t do any training, you may go there and fail and they’re going to send you home and they’re not going to call you back on the next one because they gave you a shot. And you didn’t put any investment forward pre deployment to show them that you really wanted to be there to do that. Now we have the busy times and in the busy times.

The managers don’t have time to train you. So those are the times that it affects you when you don’t have that pre deployment education in order to have the ability to know what you need to do when you get there.

So again, there’s hundreds of people coming in, it’s a big event, they don’t have time, the managers, the firms, they don’t always have time to teach everybody how to do their job.

So it’s important to have that training beforehand, in order to set yourself apart. And again, there’s going to be hundreds of adjusters throughout the year that are brand new, have never worked to claim they’re going to get an opportunity to deploy.

And they would not invest anything into this career path, getting their license, because they just wanted to go make money. Well, you have to learn that you have to be willing to invest and spend a little money in order to make money in any career that you’re choosing to try to do.

Any career, I don’t know one out there that you can make considerable money in with zero investment, everything you do takes an investment.

Okay, here’s what I do. And here’s what I recommend that everybody does. Now, there’s a lot of opportunity out there for training.

So I’m not telling you, you have to take a TAG course in order to be successful. There’s lots of training programs out there, there’s lots of opportunity to shadow, not all of them are free, most of them you’re going to have to pay for.

But again, just as we’ve discussed, that’s okay, it’s okay to pay a little bit to have or even a decent amount to have a good solid education to start with. When you license through a TAG course, you get certified. Obviously, you’ve got to start with a license, okay, you get certified to be an adjuster. Once you get your certification, which we run the classes back to back.

So you pass the final examination and begin get your Texas all lines adjuster license. And then we walk you through what we call our overview classes.

It starts with the overview of industry software, that’s your class to get a good solid overview of the estimating software’s that we use in and out every day as adjusters if you’re listening right now, and you have not taken an overview class on how to be or how to use the estimating software’s that we use in the insurance industry, I highly recommend you do that.

Now, if you do not know how to use Xactimate. And I’m not talking about getting a demo and just sketching. I’m talking about being able to navigate your way through exact debate and understand how we go through a claim.

If you haven’t done that, I highly, highly recommend you do that as soon as possible. If you don’t understand exactly mate, it’s going to be very difficult for you to estimate a claim. Same with stability or any other estimating software that the carriers are requiring you to use.

You’re not always sure which one that they use. Not all carriers use the same estimating software. But the majority of them out there today, you still use Xactimate. If you’re going to pick one go through an Xactimate class that gives you a good overview of start to finish their exact debate. Okay.

The second class that we run in conjunction with our three day trainings that we do with the adjuster guy is a Routine Claims Inspection Process. What that class actually does, and there’s others out there that can teach you this as well as the adjuster guy.

It is a class that walks you through an A typical every day claim inspection. It’s not brass tacks, but it is a complete overview along with a list of the required photographs that you need to take as an adjuster when you get out in the field.

And we stress over and over and over again, this is a routine, this is something you’re going to do at every inspection, you’re going to get the photographs you need for every item that could or could not be damaged.

Okay, again, what it’s teaching you is how to go out to the field, how to approach a home and get a full inspection completed, and take it back to the desk with you.

Then you’re going to take that information you got in the field, and you’re going to enter it into the software that we did the previous day. And we did an overview of how that software worked. Same with Symbility or any other software.

The idea is you know how to approach an inspection. And then you know how to enter the information into the software that you’re using.

You may not always even know why you’re taking those photos, but you know, you’re getting the photos. And that’s why I said when you get back to your elbow room or to your desk, if there’s a manager available or a friend available.

Even if you don’t always know exactly why you’re doing what you’re doing. They’ll be able to work with you because you’re capturing the documentation that you need in order to move forward.

And if you’d know how to get that information, whether you know whether it’s damaged or not, whether you know the names of the items. That’s okay. You don’t always have to know all that.

But you captured the documentation while you are on site. We also do a third day where we do a mock water claim on the inside of a building that gives you a little further education.

But I would say that you need to be more focused on understanding how to do an exterior wind or hail inspection and how to navigate your way through the software in order to do that.

And again, if you’re at all interested in taking this course, with the adjuster guy, we do this, ah, typically two to three times in the spring, and then two to three times in the fall, I think we’ll have some dates coming up here before storm season really kicks in that we’re going to try to get some trainings in.

I highly, highly, highly recommend you getting involved in one of these classes, you will not regret the information that you get. It is hands on with myself.

And typically, Jason Dyson, who’s the co-host of this program, we work together to teach you how to approach an inspection in a routine way, and then understand the software well enough of how to get that information into the software.

Now, again, there’s a lot of trainings out there. So if it’s not feasible for you to get to Texas, to one of the adjuster guy trainings, find a training in your area that’s going to give you that type of education. Just a brief overview.

You don’t need all the ins and outs, you don’t need all the particulars, you’re not looking for a level 1, 2, 3 or certification for Xactimate yet, you’re looking for a general overview of information that you can get so that you know what your job is and how to do what you’re going to do when you get there.

Are you going to be perfect? No. Are you going to be slow? Absolutely. Are you going to have to practice this stuff between the time the training ends and you get the opportunity to deploy? Absolutely.

But you’re going to get a general overview of the information you need in order to move forward and be successful when you get there. I can’t stress this enough, I could preach this over and over and over and over again, training, it’s so important to invest in you, your tools is and your knowledge is everything you’re going to need to move forward in this industry.

If you aren’t willing to invest in those two, it’s going to be a long struggle in order to be where you want to be as an adjuster.

So again, we’re not talking large investments, we’re talking very small investments, I don’t recommend you go out and borrow the money to that you can invest. But there are opportunities everywhere you look right now to get the training you need.

Take advantage of that training. And again, don’t be afraid to pay for it. Nothing good comes for free in today’s world. So I think I’ve harped on that long enough.

Again, if you are interested in taking any of the TAG classes look us up Look for the field training classes. If you’re not licensed go ahead and sign up for licensing class as well.

And I hope that I’m getting my point across I think I am. I just want to be able to give you guys solid information that’s going to be true to what it takes to be successful. And I really feel like it starts with the training. That has to be a priority in your career in order to be successful and go where you want to go with this.

So again, sorry for the last two weeks ago when it didn’t work out. But we’re back on track now. Jason should be joining me back in the studio.

Again, we got some good guests coming up. And we got some new things popping up. We got some new sponsors this year for Adjustments in Life, and I’m getting really excited to share those folks with you and get them on the show.

So everybody enjoy the rest of their weekend. And hopefully, we can see y’all here in two weeks.

Have fun. Thanks, guys.

The insurance adjusting world is constantly changing
There’s no short cut to success.
Here is how we help.
Join - The Adjuster Guy
Get Licensed

It doesn’t matter if you’re brand new to adjusting or a veteran, take one of our licensing classes and get started.

Follow - The Adjuster Guy
Follow Along

Our proven step-by-step plan and network of industry professionals helps you along the way.

Success - The Adjuster Guy
Find Success

With hard work, a focused strategy, ongoing learning, and a network of partnerships, you’ve got this.