Seven years ago, life changed dramatically for Phil Arnold. After a long career as an employee of a multinational company he became his own boss – as a Healthcare Practice Partner helping his customers fund their healthcare, be they individuals, families or small companies.
Today, Phil’s enjoying work more than ever. In 2008, he invested in a Healthcare Practice when he was made redundant from his sales job in the oil industry. Phil, now 57, saw this as an opportunity for doing what he wanted: working for himself.
Phil, who lives in Taunton, Somerset, explains:
"My wife had happy memories of working for Healthcare Practice years ago and said I should see if there were any opportunities. I was doing my research online and read about the opportunity to be a Healthcare Practice Partner. And it clicked: that was just what I wanted".
What was important to Phil – and remains so today - is that even though he’s running his own business, he’s not on his own. The training and guidance that he gets as a Healthcare Practice Partner means he always feels part of the company.
And there’s another reason, says Phil.
"Healthcare Practice is a not-for-profit organisation and its highly ethical stance is very important to me – and to my customers. As a partner you have a vital advantage over other private medical insurers. They seldom sell policies face to face while as a Healthcare Practice Partner you meet your customers.
And our business is not about price, it’s about making sure the customer is getting the policy which suits them. We are not like other medical insurers. We are there to complement the work of the NHS, to offer genuine choices to customers about how they look after their health and that of their family or employees".
At the start, with little prior knowledge of medical insurance it was a steep learning curve, Phil adds.
"You have a week’s intensive training at the Healthcare Practice headquarters in Somerset. I remember feeling I was outside my comfort zone but I soon realised the sales skills I had amassed from years in the oil industry could be applied here too".
"To be successful in this business you have to build contacts, nurture leads and maintain relationships. You need to get people to recommend you. If I was advising potential new Partners, I would say that you need to be enthusiastic, and put customers at the centre of all that you do; the reward is very much a reflection of your efforts".
Written by Charlotte Beugge Freelance Journalist
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When Robert Westhorp set off for The British Franchise Exhibition in Manchester five years ago, he had no idea that he would meet a former supplier and eventually join the company.
"There’s far more to being a partner with Healthcare Practice than selling insurance policies", find out from Healthcare Practice partner Lorna Smith.
My advice for anyone looking to become a Healthcare Partner is just do it! If there is a practice available near you then absolutely go for it. The training, the support, the help, the advice - it’s been the best decision that I’ve made.Ross Le Jeune - Healthcare Partner since 2016
The Healthcare Practice is unique… I’ve never worked with a company that look after you so well. Joining them was the best decision I have made in my life, hand on heart.Bob Grace - Healthcare Partner since 1999
Attending the open day at Head Office was extremely useful and helped reassure me that I was perusing a good opportunity. It allowed me to learn more about WPA, meet a number of staff and experience the culture and transparency of the organisation. It certainly played a crucial role in my decision making process about becoming a Healthcare Partner.Catherine Bennett – Healthcare Partner since December 2014
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