Agent of the Month – Stephanie Nelson

As we continue to spotlight our independent agents here at Pacific Crest, this month we highlight an agent in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Stephanie Nelson started her agency with Pacific Crest in 2011 and has had success since day one.


I spoke with Stephanie at length on her background and path in the insurance realm. She covered a lot of topics with me on everything from her childhood experiences, to different roles in insurance to what stays top of mind for her on a daily basis.


Her path started at a young age as her father owned an insurance agency in Washington. At the age of 7, she can remember wanting to help write birthday cards that her father used as a personal touch with his clients. Unfortunately, she couldn’t spell the word “sincerely” at the time and was deemed not fit for the job.


After working for a few different insurance-related companies and agencies throughout the years, Stephanie decided it was time to take her hard work, hunger and knowledge for helping people and start her own independent agency.


It wasn’t a snap decision, however. Having done a little bit of research, her and her husband came across Pacific Crest. After reaching out to Shawn Webb, PCS Principal, and doing her homework, she figured out how to not only pay the rent, but be successful in what she had been doing for years.


When referring to the start-up process, Stephanie says she, “did it in a way that (she) couldn’t fail, as long as she showed up.” Combining her experience with some former successful insurance colleagues that were looking for a change, as well, she was able to open her office in Coeur d’Alene:  When referring to the start-up process, Stephanie says “do your homework, including crunching the numbers”.  When she was unsure how to do that, Pacific Crest provided the expertise required for success.  She believes, “If you are confident in your plan, then show up every day, follow your plan and trust the process.”


Having a good reputation and benefitting from a little luck along the way (she recently relocated to an office in a zip code that had no independent insurance agents), she has had the benefit of her phones constantly ringing ever since. However, that doesn’t mean she didn’t have to put in the hours to have quotes lining up, consistently.


Enthusiasm is one of many qualities that Stephanie has when it comes to insurance, leadership and personal improvement. She prides herself on building and maintaining relationships, not only with her community and clients, but with her office staff. She understands the value of her staff and what it takes to maintain relationships with them.  Simon Sinek’s latest book, “Leaders Eat Last” has influenced her leadership in her organization.


She sees the value in a well-rounded mindset. Mentioning three things that she does every day as:


  1. She listens to inspirational business and leadership podcasts like Chris Locurto and others to start her day.
  2. Being intentional about engaging with her office staff. She makes time to reach out to them every single day to see how they’re doing and ask questions about what’s happening in their personal lives.
  3. She spends 5-10 minutes every day on social media. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are all mediums that she finds value on and uses on a regular basis.


Some of the advice that Stephanie has for those starting their agency or looking to improve is to “surround yourself with positive people and cheerleaders.”


Obviously, it helps to be raised in a world where insurance is discussed at the dinner table, but it is a huge benefit to have a positive mindset and value those around you. Stephanie clearly brings those two characteristics and much more to the game.