How’s your whelm?

How’s your whelm?

No, I’m serious!

We know about “under” and “over”, but is there a just plain “whelmed”? All the major dictionaries say yes, “whelm” is a word. I just don’t like any of their definitions!

So here goes:

Whelm or whelmed – when one is in a state of full engagement and sensing a mixture of fear and excitement.

What do you think?

In today’s insurance world, brokers are fighting:

  • the hardest market ever, fuelled by AI and Big Data
  • the COVID-19 pandemic, being exacerbated by apparently confused government leaders
  • the economic devastation resulting
  • an incredible pace of consolidation
  • new digital players
  • robust competition

Pretty easy to make the case for being over-whelmed – but doing that serves no one’s interest

No, no time to be overwhelmed, we need to get to whelmed, and quickly.

Here’s a 7-step process for setting a path forward and getting whelmed:

  1. Assess your current situation and be brutally honest about it
  2. Clarify your guiding principles, your non-negotiables, put them in writing and tell your team
  3. Write a vision statement that describes what your business will be like in 5 years and what your numbers will be and tell your team
  4. If you haven’t already, make sure you have a robust, cohesive leadership team, with the right people in the right jobs, aligned on your vision
  5. Make a 3-5 year strategic plan, put it in writing and follow it
  6. Put in place a solid performance management system
  7. Build accountability into every process and don’t mess around with the terrorists – they either get with your program or get out, no matter how skilled they may be


Don’t know how to do some of these things? No shame in that, but for heaven’s sake, go get some help!

Based on my experience, this 7-step process is a sure-fire path to whelm-ness!

Have some other ideas? I’d love to chat.

Written by Rick Bauman