American Income Life Reviews

Updated June 29, 2015
659 reviews filtered by
  • Any Location
  • Any Job Title
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Employment Status

Reset
3.2
Rating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
American Income Life CEO Roger Smith
Roger Smith
366 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

659 Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. Helpful (184)

    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

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

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    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. Hard work can put you over the top

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Supervising Agent
    Former Employee - Supervising Agent

    I worked at American Income Life full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great atmosphere, awesome people to work with. You work a lot, and get to know everyone extremely well! Office feeling is very relaxed. Job is not very difficult.

    Cons

    Your work/life balance is nonexistent. Work becomes your life. Commission only can mean making 2000 a week or 0 a week.

    Advice to Management

    Pay more attention to employees. They drive you, not the opposite.


  3. Pretty good place to make a lot of money.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time

    Pros

    You can make as much money as you like.

    Cons

    Commission only job. Charge backs and cancellations.


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Great Outlook, Great culture

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Benefits Specialist in North Royalton, OH
    Current Employee - Benefits Specialist in North Royalton, OH

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great Incentives like
    $3250 "Just because" first 6 mo+$1000 annual bonus, weekly bonus.
    Company conventions
    Fun contest for shoes, trips, events etc.
    Supportive team and staff
    Monthly residual income
    Flexible

    Cons

    Mjust be self motivated and able to work unsupervised a majority of the time.
    Might have some busy weeks but the schedule is mostly flexible.

    Advice to Management

    Just keep doing what you're doing and we'll stay one of our states top workplace for the 4th yr in a row.


  6. Recruiter

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Public Relations Specialist in Winston-Salem, NC
    Former Employee - Public Relations Specialist in Winston-Salem, NC

    I worked at American Income Life

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great Diversity and rural location easy to find. open minded employment equal oppportunity great for advancement.

    Cons

    everyman for themselves, not to clear on the hiring process with potential hirees.

    Advice to Management

    Keep revising ways to work with the hiring process


  7. Helpful (4)

    Skeptical at first.... So glad I gave them a chance.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Agent in Canonsburg, PA
    Current Employee - Agent in Canonsburg, PA

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Definitely not just a number coming into this office. I was very skeptical coming into this position after reading the reviews online. In fact, I attempted to quit before I even started. Britton (the manager that interviewed me), actually called me himself to explain things more thoroughly and answer any and all of my doubts. He could have given up on me before I even started but that just shows the type of leader Britton is. So incredibly thankful he extended this opportunity, and believed in me. I not only learned the business aspect of things, but also countless qualities to apply in every day life. I have grown so much not only as a business professional, but an individual with this opportunity.

    The rest of management is also focused on helping you succeed. You can call Tim or Jon at any hour of the day and they will help you with anything you need. They are always "on-call" and I know in any of my past companies, the managers work an eighth of the time their employees do. These guys put in twice the effort/time just to help you succeed. THE PEOPLE THAT DO NOT SUCCEED IN THIS COMPANY DO NOT GO TO WORK. It's as easy as that. They took advantage of the freedom and flexibility and couldn't understand why they go to work 2 days a week, and couldn't make the money they advertise in the interview. If you find a career they hand out 4k a week for sitting at home sleeping in let me know, AIL doesn't do that either but they will put 14k in your bank account on a Monday for putting in that extra 3 hours on a Saturday.

    Love that I am in control of my own business. No one hovering over me.

    Training is shadowing with a manager. And Paid, I made $700 my first week. Legit.

    Unlimited bonuses. And residuals.

    You are recognized for your achievements. Company wide.

    Cons

    Office Setting- could use more offices/space in general.

    Long hours sometimes.

    Role playing during training... terrible.

    Programming could be updated.

    Start up costs if you don't already have a computer or license, or a job.


  8. Helpful (1)

    Bitman Agency, Raleigh NC

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Supervising Agent in Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Supervising Agent in Raleigh, NC

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    This is the most positive environment I have ever worked for. The leaders do everything they can to make sure you succeed. Our meetings are always fun and motivational. The passion of my management team is overwhelming. I will never work anywhere else!

    Cons

    This is a job where you are paid based on what you put in. You do work long hours, so prepare for that. The money at the end of the day is so worth it though. You must, must, must be self motivated and self driven. If you want this for yourself, you WILL succeed.

    Advice to Management

    I love Patrick Knause and Slav Bitman. My GA is also amazing. I cannot think of a whole lot that could be advisable to change. The level of attention and support given is already unmatched to any position I have held before I joined the AIL family. Thank you for this unlimited opportunity!


  9. Helpful (1)

    Success is a journey, not a destination.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Hiring Manager in Eau Claire, WI
    Current Employee - Hiring Manager in Eau Claire, WI

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I have had the great experience of working at AIL Eau Claire and our managers here are positive, upbeat and motivational. If you are having a bad day --- this is where you need to come to change it around. Your attitude is everything, they say! I have worked hard, put in a lot of hours and been rewarded as such. I have worked in many fields and I can say that we have all walks of life here. I think the overview people keeping complaining about is nothing short of stating that it is AMAZING. When you read reviews, most people just complain. It's rare to ever get someone to take time out of their day to praise. I can say it is not a career for everyone but I have seen the transformation first hand as a Hiring Manager/Recruiter. I spend my day looking for the next Rita, Mike, Chad, etc. They all came from various backgrounds and in my opinion, the more seasoned you are with the world, the better your life can and will be. Working at AIL Eau Claire is a daily learning experience. And because I came from the education field and jumped into the insurance field, my love for learning could be one reason why I love it here. Things are constantly changing along with business needs. People don't leave here because they hate our company. They leave because it wasn't a good fit for them. That is out of AIL's hands. We take a chance on them, train them to the best of our ability and SUPPORT one another fully. This is my second family and I can say that I feel blessed to be part of this office. IF you don't want to work hard to earn your living, get on food stamps. Hard work has it's rewards and it may be grueling at first while your feet are wet but the water gets warm and only you are responsible for your success. I am a no excuses type person. If you wanna play the blame game, take a look in the mirror. We make our own success. If you can't find it, brainstorm and change your outlook. There are always new ways and I have seen these agents do it.

    Cons

    The turnover is what is hardest for me. I grow attached to the agents who join our teams and really enjoy coaching them through licensing and watching them grow, hear about their success stories with our clients and over all the peace of mind they get from helping families while they make their pay check. Unfortunately, we hire people who don't intend to stay but that isn't on us. We have no way of knowing if they will for sure be successful. Some people interview well but our true colors come out in the wash. This career choice isn't for everyone but it certainly deserves respect in all forms. Life Insurance is personal for me. And I think if you can't find a way to make it personal - you are in the wrong place. I haven't seen one person who left our teams leave because we didn't help them. They left because the opportunity wasn't for them and that's ok. They just opened the door to another person to -- maybe the next SGA to have the opportunity of a lifetime. Yes, you have to work many evenings when you first start out but when you "get it", you get more flexibility in your schedule. It's hard work. But if it wasn't, it wouldn't be worth it. That is ONE huge factor I have learned here. I have put in more hours than I have been paid for but it has ALL come right back around and benefit me emotionally, physically, intellectually and professionally. The bottom line for me is, it is hard to find people who want to work...rather than just have things handed to them. So when you are reading all these negative things people say, ask yourself this, "What part of that failure falls on them?" in all those areas I just mentioned. We all get what we deserve in the end whether it be success or failure.

    Advice to Management

    AIL Eau Claire provides excellent training. I have seen an amazing transformation since I started. I have had the most positive experience at AIL Eau Claire than I have at any other "job" I have had in my life. I had huge support, trust from my supervisors and training whenever I ask for it. I loved how Mike let a couple new gals team up and run appointments together. They were excited, learned from one another and it probably contributed to their success. Always trying new things and tweaking is the best route. If it doesn't work, try something new but never be opposed to the insight of others.


  10. Helpful (1)

    If you have a vision, all you have to do is work hard and American Income will get you there. Especially Arias Agencies

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Benefits Representative in Morgantown, WV
    Current Employee - Benefits Representative in Morgantown, WV

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great leadership at every level
    Protecting families
    Ability to move up QUICKLY
    Income
    Relationships with coworkers
    Worlds greatest bonus
    Convention
    Modern work hard play hard atmosphere

    Cons

    Lots of hours but you have to understand that it's temporary.

    Advice to Management

    Keep traveling the path we're on.


  11. Helpful (2)

    THE AIL LIFE...

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Sharonville, OH
    Current Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Sharonville, OH

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    If you drown yourself in knowledge, success, and hardwork...if you crave it you will get it here. I've been working at the agency for a fairly short amount of time and I will tell you if you are a go getter COME GET IT! You work hard, have the ability to be likeable, work smart and you have the ability to make bank. Come here for dreams not for slacking because you will get left behind in the race.

    If you walk in everyday with a positive outlook and really follow your leader....cheat, copy, steal from them you will make a good agent!

    Supports there if you engolf yourself in the people...don't be shy or you'll get left behind.

    Cons

    Biggest things about this career that sucks. ..

    No such thing as set hours....you work 50+ a week

    That's the biggest downfall but once again...you get out what you put in...

    Advice to Management

    Teach something new everyday....sometimes after a point it's less teaching more telling...understand not everyone knows everything yet so reiterate so they (we) can repeat.



Showing 659 of 769 reviews
Reset Filters
RSS Feed </> Embed

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.