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Hemperly Provides Anti-Steering Tips, Asks “Why Do Insurers Care?”

“‘Maybe consumers don’t care where they go—they just want their cars fixed.’ Does anyone remember who said this?’ asked Corey Hemperly of Windshield Doctor in Pocatello, Idaho, yesterday of attendees of the session, “Steering—What You Can Do,” at the Independents Glass Association (IGA) Annual Conference in Las Vegas Hemperly was quoting Sen. Don Benton, who asked this very question at a hearing recently in Washington State.

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“My question to that Senator would have been, had I been there, ‘why is it that insurers care where people go?’” Hemperly said. “Why are you bringing out all the guns to fight this type thing?”

Hemperly served on a panel of four yesterday to discuss this topic. Also on the panel were IGA board members Bryan Yarborough of Glass Doctor, Rick Rosar of Rapid Glass and Shawn Newport of Star Auto Glass.

We’re all in this to make money and it has to be done fairly and on a level playing field,” Hemperly said. Hemperly also provided several tips for providing with potential steering practices:

  • Take 15 minutes a week to read through state statutes and insurance statues;
  • Review consumer protection laws;
  • Stay involved in trade organizations. “One of the biggest arguments I hear is ‘I don’t have time to go [to conferences],’” Hemperly said. “We closed our shop for a day because we know it’s vital to be here. We’d lose more by not being here than by being here;”
  • Develop personal relationships with customers. “We view each and every one of our customers as a relationship,” he said;
  • Provide customer loyalty programs. “We reward the customer who has been there for a long time,” he said;
  • Stay focused. Hemperly compared the industry to a blizzard he and his father, Nathan, also of Windshield Doctor, encountered on their drive to Las Vegas. “We kept going. We stayed focused on where we were and where we were going—and that’s just a reminder to all of us,” he said.

Rosar, Newport and Yarborough described the comic book the IGA recently released entitled “Don’t Get Steered” and how shops can use it to work with legislators, insurance agents and customers in explaining this practice and how to avoid it.

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