Interviewed by Angus MacCaull

We’re always working to get better. As we move into our 75th year in business, we’re striving even more to live up to our mission as “well trained, highly motivated insurance specialists.”

I talked with Tracey LaTulippe in our Training Department about the year ahead!

INTERVIEWER

How’s our training looking going into 2019?

LATULIPPE

I think that a lot of people right now are thinking, “Okay, I’m on it. I want to improve myself. I want to improve my day-to-day, my workflows. Right? What are some of the things that I need to do?” People are setting goals. I think it’s an awesome time right now.

INTERVIEWER

What are you trying to learn yourself?

LATULIPPE

I’m trying to learn about creating learning plans! I’m digging a little bit more into the system and seeing how we can make it more efficient for each other.

INTERVIEWER

Nice. Wayne and I were chatting this morning and he mentioned something Stacey Purcell shared recently. She did an adult education program these last couple years and as part of her studies she was saying she found it’s really important to provide environments for people to learn and some regular processes—but to respect that it happens informally.

LATULIPPE

Yes it has to be informal. And it has to be without expectations. You want people to be able to learn from each other and feel comfortable sharing information. Some people are nervous to ask for help.

INTERVIEWER

Why do you think that is?

LATULIPPE

I don’t know why. Maybe it has something to do with feeling like they’re inadequate, when really it’s just a matter of, okay, we just need a little bit more training on it. It’s not a judgment when you identify something you don’t know. It’s a natural thing. Not everybody knows everything all the time. And then there’s times too when you don’t know what you don’t know.

INTERVIEWER

What do you mean?

LATULIPPE

Someone may bring something up to you and you’re like, “Oh my god. Yeah. Maybe I need to learn more about that.”

INTERVIEWER

One thing I’m thinking about is the time it takes. I’m wondering if you have any thoughts on that. How do we find the time?

LATULIPPE

That’s one of our biggest struggles. We’re busy day-to-day. One strategy is to create smaller, bite-size pieces so that it’s easier to get it into your day-to-day. And you’re only going to absorb so much at a time anyway, so smaller bite-size pieces that you can grab onto are good.

INTERVIEWER

I think that absorbing is really key. Training slowly changes your unconscious habits as you absorb it.

LATULIPPE

And it’s really no good for me to say, “Okay, well you need training in this and you need training in that.” You have to know you need it or you need to want it. Right? Because if you don’t, you’re not going to absorb it anyway.

INTERVIEWER

Yeah, you have to care. I don’t know if there’s a answer to this, but why now? Why is training so important right now? It is because our leadership is role-modelling change and trying to better themselves as well? Or is it because the industry is getting tougher?

LATULIPPE

I think probably a combination. Things are always changing with the insurance industry. But now that we’re settled in more with the new Keal system, people have a little bit more time and a lot more interest.

INTERVIEWER

A while back we were talking about the lessons you’ve learned selling make-up with Younique. Can you tell me more about that?

LATULIPPE

That was pretty interesting. I took that on as a get away from work type of thing, right? [laughs] And then from that, I ended up learning a lot of new skills and building a lot more confidence in myself. That’s probably a learning experience that others could try as well. Take on something outside of work that’s going to help you with your own personal development.

INTERVIEWER

Part of my ongoing training is continually becoming a better writer. One of the things I keep in mind is the idea that at a certain point in your development, as you try to become a better writer, going and doing something completely different will bring you more benefit than continuing to study writing. Like learning an instrument or learning to cook.

LATULIPPE

Exactly.

INTERVIEWER

At some point, the cross-pollination is going to be better for your development as a writer than continuing to study more writing. Because you need a different set of references for life, or you need a set of touch points to make connections, and you need a broader base of experience.

LATULIPPE

That’s what I found with the Younique Biz. You know, I had to put myself out there in front of people, which was not something I was comfortable with. But the more you do it, of course, the easier it gets. And you find all kinds of tips and tricks. The Younique environment is very similar to the AA Munro environment in that you can look to others for support. So there’s all kinds of people there that’ll help you along the way. It’s just matter of reaching out and asking.

INTERVIEWER

That’s key.

LATULIPPE

And there’s lots of times if you see someone struggling with something, you help them out. That’s all.

INTERVIEWER

One last thing I wanted to ask you about, which might not seem connected to training on the surface, is exercise. I don’t always succeed, but I try to get a little exercise in my day, to get up from the desk and get away from the screen. I find that really, really helps me reenergize and process a lot of different thoughts and feelings. And when I’m in Antigonish and out for a lunchtime walk I often see Marla and Meghan or Dawn and Anne out taking a walk as well.

LATULIPPE

Yes. Go for a walk! A walk or 15 minutes on a course or reading an article or a book, you know, just something that’s outside of the normal day-to-day. It’s amazing how quickly things can change for you by doing the small little things.

Tracey Latulippe sits with the Keal Users Group Board at a Conference
Tracey with the Keal Users Group Board