American Income Life

  www.ailife.com
  www.ailife.com

American Income Life Reviews

Updated December 12, 2014
Updated December 12, 2014
588 Reviews
3.1
588 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
American Income Life CEO Roger Smith
Roger Smith
337 Ratings

Review Highlights

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 are a shark you will do well and make a lot of money off the backs of others (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • There are not any cons that I can think of other than the long hours (in 67 reviews)

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

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 53 people found this helpful  

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

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

    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 ManagementAdvice

    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.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Benefits Coordinator/Agent

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AIL Benefits Coordinator in Cedar Rapids, IA
    Current Employee - AIL Benefits Coordinator in Cedar Rapids, IA

    I have been working at American Income Life as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Promotions are given to those that want more opportunity, if you don't want to stay in the promotion you are in you can go back to your original position with no ill feelings. Work life balance is tough at first, I have a great support system that doesn't make me feel like I'm not being part of my family. I never work Sundays and make sure all my household duties are taken care of during week to 100% focus on my family on Sunday. AIL wants to help families and I have never been pressured to give more than what is needed for the family you are speaking with. Training is side by side with a seasoned benefits coordinator and you really get to know the person and why they are working.

    Cons

    Long hours but you get what you put into it.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    A BUNCH OF FINGER POINTERS!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - General Manager in Jersey City, NJ
    Current Employee - General Manager in Jersey City, NJ

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    This opportunity is amazing! Been here for 11 month's and have averaged 2 thousand dollar pay checks per week. One week i made $5600!

    Cons

    Yes its hard. But it if were easy everyone would be doing it. all of the people you see complaining are people who were unable to do the job because at the end of the day they were not willing to put in the hard work. See you at Mc Donalds! and yes i want fries with that : )

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    the management staff at this company makes sure that if you put in the work your successful. my advice to someone looking for a job is " if you are looking for $300 a week and easy go to the post office, if you are looking for 2k+ per week and hard work and a bright future don't scare you join the club we are in all 50 states as well as internationally!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Life changing

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

    I have been working at American Income Life

    Pros

    Ability to pay myself what I'm worth

    Cons

    It's a grind in the beginning. But who says success comes easy?

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    OK place to get your start, but if you are licensed you can do better.

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

    I worked at American Income Life full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good job if you like sales. Good , you are your own boss, its your business so you make your own work schedule.Great Sales team. Great Product and services. I meet with clients on a one on one basis to market and sell our product. the company encourages growth for their employees. And the company provides an excellent service to their clients

    Cons

    Calling people to tell them about the company. To seek their interest. I learned more about the company from others questions. Co workers were easy to get along with, hardest part of the day was scheduling interviews around peoples schedules. The most enjoyable part of the day was successfully scheduling interviews.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Positive experience

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

    I have been working at American Income Life full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Personal growth, helping working families, potential for large income, great team of people diverse and willing to help others. Very good culture and positive people.

    Cons

    There is a great deal to learn in a short amount of time, If you do not have a very good work ethic you willstruggle with success. Time mgt skills are a must,

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make sure you train and support the quality people who put forth the time and effort to succeed.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    If Educated then probably not for you

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

    I have been working at American Income Life as a contractor

    Pros

    Face to face sales experience. Build relationships with clients.

    Cons

    Recruiting company that happens to sell insurance. Recruit Recruit Recruit, doesn't matter if you are in "management" or not. 1099 self-employed, not an employee. 100% commission. You don't really get to set your own schedule, they push you to work all the time, especially evenings, weekends, holidays, and birthdays. No benefits unless you are hitting a high quota on a consistent basis, then you get a small reimbursement for your own health insurance you bought on your own. No work/life balance. Gas cost, car wear and tear.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be upfront to everybody when interviewing. Actually train new representatives. Don't promise the sky.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Not for everyone

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Minneapolis, MN
    Former Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Minneapolis, MN

    I worked at American Income Life as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    High earning potential, team environment, successful sales script and programs, internal lead generation, great product.

    Cons

    Schedule is not as advertised- the highest earners are working any and every hour of the day. Its not a "hard sales" approach, but there is definitely repeated assumptive closing and if you're not comfortable with applying that pressure, you won't likely succeed.

    Interviews shouldn't include "ideal" timelines, please tell people exactly what they are headed for so that your turn over decreases. You pay for your license and could go without a paycheck for 3+ weeks and scheduling another job is virtually impossible.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be straight with people, don't just tell them what they want to hear and hope they paycheck and environment keeps them hooked.

    Doesn't Recommend
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Legit but your not servicing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Life Insurance Agent in La Crosse, WI
    Former Employee - Life Insurance Agent in La Crosse, WI

    I worked at American Income Life full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Work on your own. When your selling the money is good

    Cons

    Constantly on the phone over priced and a pyramid scheme

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop hiring losers and degenerates and find some people with real Intelligence

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Interesting & stressful. Way out of my element for employment

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

    I have been working at American Income Life as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Possible compensation, meeting are not your ordinary business meeting

    Cons

    Commission based only, being 1099 for taxes and MLM

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Actually listen to concerns of employees and there will be less communication issues

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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