Minneapolis Breakfast Club

How’s The Life Insurance Business Doing?

Early Birds: We ended up with 29 participants today. A really good crowd. Kudos to Jerry Olson for being the tech host of the meetings.

Guests: Dara Page of Newell and Mr. Hembreell of Smead invited by Jim Christianson.

Honorary Members: Martin Peyer, Karen Holtmeier, Ron Britz, Tom Donnelly and Mark Simon in virtual attendance again this week.

President Chuck Shreffler opened the meeting by asking for a moment of silence.


  1. Ron Britz announced he is a grandfather for the 3rd time, all girls.
  2. Mike Palm checked in from a parking lot in Santa Fe, NM. Apparently, he will be spending the rest of his life in an RV with his wife, Shannon, and dog, Broker…..or not.
  3. The club is holding a contest to guess when the next in person meeting will occur this year. Winning prize is a month of free dues. Send your entries to Chuck Shreffler.
  4. Its time to forage for mushrooms according to Dave Mitchell.

Business Updates/Commentary

Tom Ashbaugh gave us an update on how the life insurance business has been coping with the pandemic. If you were licensed in PA, you could lose your license by meeting a client face to face. Tom had a sales call on-line with a potential client in Arizona last week. There were lots of tech issues, but a good meeting anyway. Some in the industry are seeing little activity and others appear to be booming. Agents have to find new ways of doing what used to be face to face sales presentations. Specific to life insurance, physicals are being waived and rates are dropping. It is an excellent time to review your coverages and change things if needed.

Matt Crane gave us an update on Boulay. They are spending a lot of time on the PPP program for their clients. Particularly making sure they qualify for the “Forgiveness” aspect of the loan and how it will be treated on tax returns in the future. Boulay is not yet opening up their offices and expect to be slow about when they do that. As long as work can be done remotely, they will continue to execute their business that way. They are thinking they will not be “normal” for 18 months.

Randy Korn brought up recalling workers when you get the PPP loan and the employee looks at their salary vs unemployment and says it’s a wash and I might as well stay home. Add in the potential health risk of coming to work, and some will opt to stay out of the workforce. Ideas discussed were bonuses to get them back to work and possibly retention bonuses to keep them at work.

A basic question being asked was “How long will the COVID-19 impact last economically?”.

As always a great discussion with club members.

Business Exchange

Jim Christianson, Tom Ashbaugh, Mike Palm, Jon Peterson, Kelsey Knight, and Jim Erickson all had something to share this week.

You can give feedback on this meeting (and topics for future meetings) to Chuck Shreffler at Chuck@chucklaw.com or 612-872-8000 by voice or text.

Looking ahead

May 13- Staples with a virtual trade show

May 20- Virtual Meeting