Buddy Hornbeck Jr. is ready for anything.
In his mind, that’s a key part of the appeal of working in insurance. “In this industry, it’s something different every day,” he explains - a perspective he picked up from his father, who also worked in insurance, like his father before him. (All three men opted to pair the nickname “Buddy” with their given name, Huntley.)
Hornbeck Jr also adopted a simple approach to business from his dad, who doubles as his mentor: “If you bust your butt and work hard, communicate with your team and always put the client first, you can be successful,” he says.
All three of those tactics have been critical lately, as Hornbeck Jr has navigated his role as an area vice president at Arthur J. Gallagher’s Naples office, formerly Lutgert Insurance. Premiums are up, and demands on staff are high.
“Some of my clients in January saw increases over 300%. The year before was 40 to 50%,” he explains. Under those conditions, maintaining the client relationship requires clear and frequent communication. Clients up for renewal should expect to hear from Hornbeck about four months out, with biweekly meetings to follow, which means a lot of prep for Hornbeck’s support team.
“Our staff has had to take on so much more work on every single renewal, and they’ve done just a phenomenal job,” he says. “We wouldn’t be able to do our job without them.”
Hornbeck Jr is big on team - at work, on the playing field (he and his sisters are co-chairs of the Wingfoot Scholarship Foundation) and at home, where the team recently grew by one with the welcoming of a third child in early September.
And the MVP award? That goes to his wife, Lindsay. “She does so much,” he says.