American Income Life Reviews

Updated August 31, 2015
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3.2
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American Income Life CEO Roger Smith
Roger Smith
399 Ratings

Pros
  • You have the opportunity to make a lot of money if you have what it takes to make the sale (in 20 reviews)

  • If you have no moral compass then you can make a lot of money (in 14 reviews)

Cons
  • Sometimes I may work long hours (in 67 reviews)

  • The only way to make a lot of money is to be dishonest (in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

728 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (250)

    Might Be The Longest & Hopefully the Most Honest & Balanced Review on Glassdoor Concerning AIL. Please read to the end!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Regional Director
    Current Employee - Regional Director
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    So many pros here....let's start with: 1) Freedom & flexibility- the ability to be an independent contractor (1099 associate) who can set their own hours, work pace, and income level. 2) Preparation for the future- It is also nice that you can utilize AIL to gain valuable knowledge about sales, marketing, business development, communications and almost any other valuable skill/trait you would normally acquire in a university/college setting before setting out into the professional world. AIL is a great place for people to develop a solid core for what may lie ahead in their future for what they ultimately want to do for the rest of their lives. 3) A fully-vested, Union-protected 10-year renewal plan makes achieving whatever you want to do in life possible- whether it is starting your own business or a non-profit, without taking out huge small business loans. Work hard now- enjoy the financial benefits for the rest of your life. 4) The socialization aspect: from policyholders to co-workers to the random person that opens up the door to you on a daily basis there is never a boring day @ AIL. In short, we get paid to drive, talk, and help educate people on how to be financially literate when it comes to insurance and savings. Also, we get invited to BBQ's, family functions, and many other cool events from our members. It is impossible to work @ AIL and not develop a strong social network as a result of working here! 5) The opportunity to be given recognition and additional responsibilities based on your own results, instead of on tenure or who you know 6) Legitimate 6-figure income reality...I've personally only had 1 year under $100,000 and I took a ton of time off that year. I had never made more than 50,000 per year working 60-70 hours per week in retail prior to AIL. 7) Good Senior Leadership/Mentors: although rare, this company truly some fantastic individuals sitting in high-profile & decision-making positions within the company...many of whom truly live the company's mottos and operating principles to the 'T' 8) Ability to rebound quickly in a financial crisis- whether it happens directly or indirectly to you there a very few professional opportunities where you can go make an extra 10K or so the following month, even if you are not a manager. While money is the root of all evil, it can also help you do great by and support those around when times get tough. As long as someone focuses on the beneficial aspects of the monetary opportunity at AIL they will be in a good place. 9) Running your own business- as long as you are showing results and growth, you can run your own office(s) with nearly absolute autonomy. But, unlike running your own traditional business, you have the support of a Fortune 700 company and its senior leaders when you need it. It's the best of both world's really.

    Cons

    NOTE: Every individual AIL office is franchised and no two are exactly alike in nature...just like a fast-food chain or multiple-location gym. Depending on your SGA (AIL franchise-owner), RGA, MGA, and other upline managers, you may have the above-mentioned freedom & financial opportunities inhibited by several factors including: 1) Micromanagement- many managers treat their associates like W-2 employees in their daily interactions with them and should be reminded of the 6-Point Test for Independent Contractors to help them develop a working relationship that is more true to the nature of their contract. Recommend to do something, but not require them to do something. Small but huge difference between the two. 2) Too heavy of a focus on the scripts- teach your associates the script and it's key components but don't hold back their creativity and interpretation of the presentation- remember, you hired them because they were intelligent beings (I hope)...not script-reciting robots. 3) Mandatory Meetings- yikes, this is a huge legal volcano waiting to bury the SGA's of this company. Recommend attendance and explain why it is important associates are there...and leave it at that. 4) Lack of accountability from senior management- remember, you are not infallible...quit making promises you can't back up and if you fail to uphold your end of the bargain, make it right in whatever way possible! 5) Buddy-buddy system- depending on the SGA, many are very cliquey and develop too tight of an inner-circle where the general attitude becomes very akin to a fanatic cult. Stay true to your standards and guidelines, not to who challenges you the least and edifies the very ground you walk on 6) Chargebacks and selective underwriting- you may actually owe the money back to the company if you submit a policy that does not get issued due to health, even though sometimes the insured met the underwriting guidelines of the field guide you were issued. AIL also does not like to underwrite large policies for some reason. 7) Too many traps in the bonus system- many times as a senior manager I have not earned the bonuses I projected on earning because of the several pitfalls in the bonus system, such as the quality of the downline manager (the manager you are supervising), the fact that your downline managers did not code enough new associates (even though you might have) 8) The Peter-principle- associates are promoted to management positions to rapidly in many SGAships across AIL so they never get a chance to fully grow into their previous role and end up failing miserably at everything. Give junior associates more time to hone their skills before throwing the next task(s) at them. If you want to grow so bad, go do it yourself and stop forcing others to take on your responsibilities.

    Advice to Management

    Before I give advice to management (see below) I would like to give some advice to those reading reviews: 90% of the content of the negative reviews you see on this site are TRUE, to one degree or another. But remember, no one generally goes to the internet to blog about how great things are- it's usually to complain or expose what they feel is negative. However, some red flags for you (the potential job seeker) when you are reading reviews: if someone says the word "employee" in their review you can essentially disregard the rest of the review due to the actual nature of the contract they signed. Also, if someone complains about travelling they simply were not paying attention to the interview process (or the local office wasn't being truthful)- they were blinded by the $$ potential. And finally if anyone complains about management not being truthful, in most cases I have observed it's because they came ill-prepared for the interview and did not ask enough and/or the right questions. To expand on that, another huge reason for attrition is lack of spousal support. The new associate might not have clearly explained the opportunity & its requirements to their spouse or s/o- approx. I would put the figure of dissatisfied agents around 60% of the total % of dissatisfied agents that promise their better halves the world via this opportunity and do not prepare them for the initial 3-6 month grind required to be successful long-term. My advice to candidates: don't sign on the dot for the job- ask to ride along (job shadow) the person interviewing for a day or two before committing to the opportunity. Also, once you commit: do so for a minimum of 6-months. This is not a career you can gauge on a daily or weekly basis. Now that I have said that, I am exited to provide some valuable some advice to the management: 1) Stop hiring everybody! This career should not be someone's first "real job"...you really do need a bit of good educational or professional experience (at minimum an internship or working entry-level at a successful company, regardless of industry) prior to joining AIL. AIL is only good for a gateway into the financial services industry, not into the general realm of employment itself! By hiring bad candidates you alienate the good candidates in your organization and the opportunity does not seem that special anymore, hurting agency culture and individual drive. 2) Hire by necessity- not in advance to replace the inevitable turnover. If you are losing agents left and right, aggressive hiring on a weekly basis will do nothing but apply a 1-month Band-Aid to the solution and fill the pockets of your SGA!! In order to stop turnover, book a ton of interviews and only select the absolute best candidates, mentor them to obtain their license, and support them during their 1st 90 days as if they were the last agents you are ever going to hire. In short, don't hire their replacement until they give you a reason to do so. 3) Know your territory and the opportunities/constraints it provides, don't out hire your available resources to where your agents must produce 90% of their leads by referrals just to have a weekly paycheck. Referrals are awesome, but remember- we are a UNION company, first and foremost. When those goes by the wayside, so does our niche and the business model itself will start to decay leaving us at the same level as State Farm, New York Life, Farmers, etc...just a general insurance company looking to present to anybody willing to listen to our "spiel". 4) Educate your Agency Owners (running their own office) about business & tax legalities. Don't force them to invest their money, hire associates under the table, put agents on mandatory schedules...and then when they get in trouble hide behind the "Oh, well they are an independent contractor" guise. Step up and take ownership of the actions of those below you that you have mentored. 5) Do more with less. Currently as a company I feel we could double our production but cutting 1/3 of our agency force and cutting recruiting efforts by over 66%...this would leave 2-3 uninterrupted weeks to devote to the proper mentoring of those associates we bring on to our respective teams and provide the time needed for managers to increase production so junior managers can afford to give away some business to a new associate once they pass their state licensing exam. If you want to recruit every week, you personally should pay for the staff to do so instead of shifting the financial & logistical burden onto managers below you w/ a fraction of your income. 6) Be upfront and don't tell lies to people in the hiring process. Set up clear expectations (in writing) and don't be afraid to sign your name on the line of what the position will entail from day 1 - retirement. 7) Make a commitment to yourself that you will help this company be great again- yes we are making more $$ than ever before and our company's growth is nothing short of admirable....let's just leave a smaller "trail of blood" in the process and not build OUR dreams on the obliterated ones of wide-eyed newbies who often entrust us with the last bit of money, time, and trust they have left during these rough times. Let's be a positive example for labor and not a thorn in its side. 8) Create a more formal business structure by creating roles for key associates and assisting junior managers with their investments in the structure of their business...instead of giving away thousands of dollars of I-pads, vacations and other ridiculous prizes that only benefit the top 10% of the company. It's time to stop making a non-MLM company appear like one.


  2. Helpful (2)

    Worth It If You Can Put The Time Into It

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time

    Pros

    Flexible Hours, work hard and smart, your paycheck will show it. Plethora of room for personal growth

    Cons

    "Flexible Hours" is used loosely


  3. Helpful (3)

    Great place to work if you have plenty of time on your hands

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Flexibility Own business Compensation is great

    Cons

    Full commission / working all day


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  5. Helpful (10)

    HERE IS THE REAL DEAL!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Eatontown, NJ
    Current Employee - Manager in Eatontown, NJ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The money you make is life changing

    Cons

    If it were easy everyone would be doing it. This is not a part time job or a temporary position.


  6. Helpful (3)

    Life Changing

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Insurance Agent in Grand Rapids, MI
    Current Employee - Insurance Agent in Grand Rapids, MI
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great company if you work for the right agency. The money is great and you aren't stuck in an office all day.

    Cons

    You work alot, but you get out what you put in.


  7. Helpful (3)

    Opportunity Unlimited

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Meridian, ID
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Meridian, ID
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Income Life (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Having no idea what to expect I came to AIL with an open mind. In the last 6 months my life has changed dramatically. I no longer worry about how to pay bills. I'm surrounded by leadership that bends over backwords to help you grow your own business and achieve what I want personally. Different income streams generate a level of living I've never experienced before.

    Cons

    Hours are long, but extremely worth it in the long run. You can choose your own hours


  8. Helpful (3)

    Great company and great people!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Operations Director in Salt Lake City, UT
    Current Employee - Field Operations Director in Salt Lake City, UT
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time

    Pros

    This is the best company I have ever worked with. The culture of caring, helping, hard work and playing hard coupled with structure and support is unlike any other I have been a part of. This is surely a career not a job. It's an opportunity to get paid what you're worth and grow at the pace you want and live the lifestyle most only dream of. I can't imagine life without Altig and am grateful for what the company has given me. Thank you Altig Orlovic!!

    Cons

    It is a career not a job, so be willing to build your career and work hard. It's not easy to make 100k plus, if it were everyone would earn that kind of money. Be willing to work hard and put in the time and the business will give back 100 fold and pay big dividends to you and your family.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Agent

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Insurance Agent in Burlington, MA
    Current Employee - Insurance Agent in Burlington, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Income Life (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great spirit, enthusiasm, training and support Unlimited earnings, Run your own business Excellent management

    Cons

    100% commission Poor work/life balance high turnover

    Advice to Management

    Keep on inspiring us to exceed our expectations


  10. Helpful (7)

    Perfect job, if that's all you ever do.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The people were awesome, and the pay was ever better. you went into some very interesting households, and got to feel like you were helping families avoid disaster.

    Cons

    Long Hours (14-16 hour days), Tons of training. Also, you're a salesman, no getting around it.


  11. Helpful (2)

    Altig-AIL

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Master General Agent in Kïhei, HI
    Current Employee - Master General Agent in Kïhei, HI
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    This is truly Opportunity Unlimited! If you're looking for financial freedom, flexible hours and a chance to make six figures income based on hard word and dedication this is where you'll find it. At Altig, you learn the skills on how to mentor and train people. You are the business owner and to start all you need is to invest is your sweat equity. Rewards And promotions are not based on who you know but results. Altig's culture is positive and absolutely all about people first.

    Cons

    First 90 days training is rigorous. This is not a job where you clock in and out therefore, unless you are self discipline and highly motivated this career is not for you.

    Advice to Management

    Keep rolling out new technology to make our job easier.



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