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40 Under 40 - Class of 2020
Business Observer Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020 4 days ago

Lindsey Epting, 36

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Al Purmort Insurance/Shepherd Insurance, executive insurance adviser
by: Grier Ferguson Sarasota-Manatee Editor

At first, Lindsey Epting wasn’t too excited when her dad suggested she consider a career in insurance. But now things have changed.

“If you meet me on the street, insurance is going to come up in the conversation,” Epting says. “For some people in insurance, it’s like, ‘Yeah, it pays the bills.’ I could talk for hours about insurance. I can’t get enough of it.”

Her first taste of the industry came at 18, when she got a job doing administrative tasks for her family’s State Farm agent. She noticed customers knew the agent’s birthday and his kids’ names, and they’d come in just to say hello. Epting says: “I thought, ‘Well, this is neat. This is not just transactional.’”

Now Epting has worked in insurance for 17 years, going on 18. As an executive insurance adviser for Sarasota-based Al Purmort Insurance, part of Carmel, Ind.-based Shepherd Insurance, her job involves drumming up organic growth. Key to that is relationship building. “I wear my heart on my sleeve, and my customers become family to me,” she says. It’s not uncommon for customers to send her birthday and anniversary cards, and when she had her children, they sent her flowers.

Courtesy. An area moms group became an amazing referral source and source of friendships for Lindsey Epting.

Epting’s competitiveness and perseverance have also helped her succeed. “I have never, from childhood, taken no for an answer,” she says. “It got me in a lot of trouble as a kid, but it’s proven to be a very good quality to have as an adult.” If a client comes to her and says he’s been told he’s uninsurable, she relishes the opportunity. “I like challenges,” Epting says. “Bring me something that doesn’t meet the mold. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

Epting also found success by building relationships with area mothers. After giving birth to her daughter, Epting struggled with being a new mom and wanted to connect with other mothers. She went online and found a Facebook group with about 90 moms. She met up with the women and their babies in the park and soon developed friendships. Since then, the group has expanded, now numbering in the thousands. And friendships weren’t the only outcome — it also became an amazing referral source. “That led to my success and [a] very quick climb up the production ladder,” she says. “I don’t know that without that moms group I would be where I am today because it’s such a referral base.”

For the future, Epting has big goals. In the next 10 years, she wants to own an agency or be a partner in an agency. She says, “To pass on my knowledge, my experience, my tricks and my tips would just light my world on fire.”

 

GAME STATS

Age

36

City of Residence

Lakewood Ranch

Employer

Al Purmort Insurance/ Shepherd Insurance

Title

Executive insurance adviser

Birthplace

Orlando

Years on the Gulf Coast

12

Marital Status/Children

Married with two kids

Alma Mater/Degree

N/A — obtained insurance licenses and started working in insurance immediately

What community group or organization are you most involved with?

Children's soccer leagues — I am a soccer mom. The crazy lady running down the side of the field, cheering my kids on.

What's the weirdest job you've ever had?

Hello Kitty at 16

What's your top tip for being productive?

Being productive takes extreme dedication, grit and determination. I am a self-admitted type A personality. I respond to my emails first thing in the morning and then again in the late afternoon (not all day). Additionally, a daily to-do list that consists of the most important to least important task for the day. Routine and organization are key.

If you could have a side hustle, what would it be?

Reality: a personal shopper. I love fashion and design. Dream: FBI agent

What's your favorite off-hours activity?

Traveling to the Florida Keys, snorkeling, swimming and playing with my kids

What's your favorite board game, game show or video game?

Board game: Watch Ya Mouth

What’s your go-to delivery service? (DoorDash, Uber Eats, GrubHub, Bite Squad, etc.)

Uber Eats

What do you use most — Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams or Google Meetings?

Microsoft Teams

What’s the best binge-worthy show you have enjoyed during the pandemic?

"Absentia" and "Homeland." I might need to be an FBI agent after watching these shows.

What’s the longest virtual meeting you’ve been on since mid-March?

One hour

How many times had you used video for a work meeting prior to the pandemic?

0

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned during the pandemic?

Without a doubt, there are many silver linings to this pandemic. Life is precious, and never take a day for granted.

What do you miss most about the world pre-pandemic?

Honestly, I miss the laid-back atmosphere in life, and I miss my family and friends. Family and friends mean everything to me, and it's hard to go months without seeing anyone, especially my immediate family.

What have you been spending more time doing during the pandemic?

I try my best to keep a routine. Things like morning runs, going to church online, swimming, being a teacher to my kids, going to the beach and of course and maintaining my role as executive insurance adviser to my clients.

Do you prefer working from home or working from an office?

Benefits to both, but I love the office and meeting my clients.

How have you kept up camaraderie with colleagues during the pandemic?

We text a lot, and we're on the Microsoft Teams all day long. On our stressful days we post funny memes or just witty/sarcastic jokes. We definitely have an unbreakable bond.

What’s the first thing you’ll do after the pandemic?

Go visit my family and then a longoverdue trip to my favorite place, the Florida Keys, I might not come back — just kidding!

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