Tyler Nicholson got into insurance the same way a lot of people in the industry do... through someone he knew. A long-time friend asked Tyler to join him at a large auto insurance brokerage. So he set to work to get his license.
But, the day he passed the state exam, Tyler got a call from another friend who heard he just got into the industry and encouraged him to work for her dad. Initially he passed on the job and started training at the auto insurance brokerage. But later that same month, he did accept the position to work for his friend's dad, who ended up being his boss at FSC for many years.
After 11 years in the industry, Tyler still has never used his insurance license, but he does keep it active. I spoke with Tyler about what challenges he faces and how he stays motivated. This is the way Tyler Nicholson works.
San Gabriel Valley in southern California
Director of Marketing at Aspire General Insurance
One word that describes how you like to work.
Current mobile device:
What is it you like about the industry?
I enjoy the fact that for being in an industry that's very competitive, it's also very close knit and most people network with each other regardless if they are competitors.
Project(s) you're currently working on.
Many, but they all have to do with continuing Aspire as the fastest growing auto insurance carrier in California and making it the number one auto carrier to do business with.
Accomplishments you're proud of.
Providing a fulfilling life for my family in an area my wife and I both grew up in.
What are your goals for the next 12 months?
See my answer to the second to last question above.
Aside from your phone and computer, what gadget can't you live without and why?
I don't really use gadgets when not working, so I'll say my pool's salt system, since after setting it up, I haven't added chlorine to my pool once!
Describe your workspace.
I have three separate work spaces. My actual office where my company is located in Rancho Cucamonga, California. My car where some of the best work happens, and my home office, which is where I work in the evenings and come up with my best ideas. All of them are very clean, and I don't have anything out in the open that I am not currently working on. The home office has a few pictures and sales awards from over the years.
How do you manage your to-do list?
Many ways. A CRM, Outlook, and Excel. It just depends on what type of task or activity I need to complete.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I get up by 6 a.m. and usually start working within an hour. I can't say that I have typical days since they are all very different based on where I need to be and what needs to get done. It's one great thing about what I do, I definitely don't get bored.
What are your biggest professional challenges?
Not taking regular breaks. I get going and miss lunch most days.
What do you like most about your job?
The people I work with and that what I am doing is the central focus of my company.
What's the most recent app you've downloaded but have yet to use?
Ebay. I'm not much of a consumer.
When you finish a project do you immediately jump to the next one? Or, do you take time to revel in what you accomplished and let your mind wander without worrying about what's next?
I always jump to what's next. Finishing something gives me the energy to keep going.
What's your best time-saving tip or hack?
Waze App. Much better than my car's GPS. It has saved me more times than I can count while working and on vacation.
What is your best everyday habit?
Waking up earlier than needed. It always better than being rushed.
What do you listen to while working?
I don't listen to music while working, but while in the car, I use music to get pumped up or to relax, whatever I'm in the need of at that moment.
What are you currently reading?
Nothing at the moment.
What's your favorite blog and/or podcast?
Don't have any.
How do you decompress?
Being with family and being outdoors.
What's your sleep routine like?
I wouldn't call it a routine. I get about five to six hours a night during the week and hopefully eight on the weekends.
What's your most memorable face-palm moment?
Too many to list.
Who are your business idols and why?
My current boss Byron Storms and my last boss Steve Moulios have taught me through example over the years, that there's no replacement for hard work. Both have balanced very active family lives while doing this.
What's the best advice you've ever received?
Slow down, even though I don't always take it.
If you could switch jobs with someone, who would it be?
I can't say I want anyone else's job.
Who would you like to see in a future This is the Way post?
Mark Cuban or Warren Buffet - just so I can see what they are currently working on.
The This is the Way blog series asks ITC employees, agents, carriers and other people in the industry how they work and to share their tips. Is there someone you want to see featured or questions we should ask? Tweet us or leave it in the comments below.
About the Author
As vice president of marketing, Becky Schroeder oversees ITC’s growth through marketing and drives the overall marketing strategy for the company and its products. Her specialties include advertising, social media, email marketing, content marketing and public relations. Becky has a master’s degree in integrated marketing communication from Emerson College in Boston and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Texas A&M University. Becky is a big Texas A&M football fan and enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her husband and their three daughters.Follow on Twitter More Content by Becky Schroeder