For some claim departments and professionals, the holiday season marks a ramp-down of the pace of business. Less incoming mail arrives. The phone is quieter. Fewer lawsuits are filed and reported. Fewer emails and faxes intrude. (Your mileage may vary, again either due to the types of insurance you write or if you work for a TPA that gets overflow assignments.)
The silver lining: this temporary lull can be an excellent time for the claim staff to invest time in activities to boost productivity and get them off to a running start the next year.
For example, these include:
• Purging old materials (both hard copy and files on hard drives) that are no longer needed
• Organizing one’s desk, drawers and reference material
• Writing professional goals for the next year and embedding “ticklers” or reminders on the calendar to revisit progress on these periodically through the next year.
• Reflecting on the year that is winding down and do some “big picture” thinking about your job and career direction.
• Networking with other professionals that you had a hard time finding time for earlier in the year
• Updating your Rolodex
• Updating your resume (not while on the job, though, of course!!)
• Blocking out time for next year’s vacation and putting in your request NOW for that time off.
• Reaching out by phone, email or by card to key clients or business partners to wish then a happy holiday season and let them know how much you appreciate them.
Tip: use any “lull” presented at the end of year to catch your breath, gather yourself, get organized and get focused on what you want to accomplish as a claim professional in 2012!
The Claims Coach may scramble back up the chimney and not appear again before the end of the year, in which case, he wishes all a happy and fun holiday season!!
How do YOU use the holiday season to get ready for the next year? How have you used this time of year to catch up?
Kevin Quinley CPCU, ARM, AIC is a claims consultant in the Washington D.C. area. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or at www.kevinquinley.com This post is excerpted from a forthcoming book Kevin is writing on claims productivity