A couple of days ago I reviewed an article which asserted that reading information about your chosen field for 15 minutes a day for 20 years will make you a world class expert.

I don’t know that I entirely agree with that statement, but I do know that most people don’t put in that minimal time, so 15 minutes a day would provide a dramatic improvement of industry knowledge.

The Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) has made some employee benefits producers practically obsolete in the health insurance field. Failure to avail themselves of ACA certification courses or read the daily barrage of articles provided by industry periodicals have left many illiterate when they discuss the future of health insurance.

With office hours and deadlines and compliance responsibilities and sales goals, its understandable why some people feel they don’t have time to read all those magazines and emails.

It is a changing environment with technology playing a larger roll in our interactions with clients. Laptops and smart phones have replaced faxes and personal assistants. We no longer need a corner office filled with expenseive cherry furniture. We don’t even need paper files anymore with the cloud. And who the heck knows where the cloud is anyway?

Technology has put the world at our fingertips. There is no subject that we can not access if we know where and how to look for it. There is no excuse for not keeping informed in our chosen professions. That said, there is a world starved for knowledge, because the fruit on the information tree comes with some many costs and gateways, its difficult to get a direct answer.

So here is the thing. In the insurance industry, relationships are still very important. But relationships are built on trust and mutual benefit. We have a responsibility to have the right answers and guidance for our clients. Anything less is a disservice to to both.

What makes someone a world class expert? I am still uncertain, but I know what does not.