After serving in the U.S. Navy for three years, Jon Spaugy joined the insurance industry as an agent for Key City Insurance thanks to a recommendation from his parents. In the 25 years since, he has worked on both the agency and carrier side, including Kemper Specialty, AIG and The Hartford.
In 2010 he started BIG Independent Group to aid in the prosperity and development of the independent agent channel. He also co-owns two independent agencies (personal lines and transportation) and recently joined SIAA in Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. This industry has introduced him to his wife, Rosa, and helped him grow professionally and personally.
“I love everything about this business. At the end of the day, we are all a small community. We support and take care of each other.”
I talked with Jon about his time in the industry and how he manages his many roles. This is the way Jon Spaugy works.
Rancho Cucmonga, California
President of S & R Insurance, president of RSR Insurance, and founder and CEO of BIG Independent Group
One word that describes how you like to work.
What do you like most about your job?
Bringing people together
Current mobile device:
iPhone 6 but looking to upgrade to iPhone 7
Project(s) you’re currently working on.
I am planning for the fourth quarter to grow both our personal lines agency and our transportation agency. We are recruiting to bring agencies in the Inland Empire onto SIAA. I am getting ready for the BIG Independent Group agents appreciation dinner in December. I am also working on the BIG convention that takes place in May and the minivention that happens in September.
Accomplishments you’re proud of:
The thing I am most proud of is helping agency owners grow their businesses so they can take care of their families, communities and friends. It is important to me to give back to the industry that has given me so much.
What are your biggest professional challenges?
I am a very passionate person for the industry and some time that is looked at in a negative way. I care deeply about our industry and want us all to grow as community. I get frustrated when we don’t get involved.
What are your goals for the next 12 months?
To increase my agency staff to six more producers. To bring 50 new offices into SIAA for Riverside County and San Bernardino County. To double our written premium with our transportation agency. And, to have the best convention and tradeshow for BIG Independent Group.
Aside from your phone and computer, what gadget can’t you live without and why?
Universal Remote. Just make life easy
What’s the most recent app you’ve downloaded but have yet to use?
Describe your workspace.
Focused but fun when it needs to be.
How do you manage your to-do list?
Not very well. I often say I am the most unorganized but organized person I know. I set up reminders on my iPhone to keep me on track with all the projects I am working on.
How do you keep up with what’s happening in the industry?
I talk to people, I read trade magazines, and I attend as many meetings, conventions and tradeshows as I can. This industry in constantly changing, and you can get left behind so I try to stay as active as possible to keep up with it.
Got any time-saving tips or hacks?
The best way to take a selfie on the iPhone is using the left volume button instead of trying to reach for the middle of the phone.
What is your best everyday habit?
My newest habit is I try to exercise every day. My best habit is I always wake up happy.
What is your motto or personal mantra?
Work hard, play hard and never let anyone steal your happiness.
What do you listen to while working?
I listen to every type of music, but lately I have been listening to old hip hop music.
What are you currently reading?
“The Richest Man in Babylon”
How do you decompress?
My wife and I really enjoy dancing so that’s where you will find us when we are not working.
What’s your sleep routine like?
Horrible. I normally go to bed around 2 a.m. and get up at 7 a.m. unless we are in our second home in Las Vegas then we go to bed at 7 a.m. and get up at 2 p.m.
What are you watching on Netflix right now?
Master of None
Who are your business idols and why?
Ken Spaugy, my dad. He trained me in the industry and showed me how to also work with passion, integrity, professionalism, and how to be a man.
Ron Thurman, the owner of Key City Insurance. He gave me the chance to be in this industry.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Always follow up with people even if they might not want to hear to answer you have to give them.
If you could switch jobs with someone, who would it be?
No one. I am happier now than I have ever been. I love being me.
Who would you like to see in a future This is the Way post?
Michael Binns, president of Hallmark Insurance.
The This is the Way blog series asks ITC employees, agents, carriers and other people in the industry how they work and to share their tips. Is there someone you want to see featured or questions we should ask? Tweet us or leave it in the comments below.