John Vucicevic CLU ChFC
101 Trenovia Place, Panama City Beach, FL 32407
President / General Manager / VP Sales – Financial Services
P&L / Negotiations / Regulatory Compliance / Budget / Reengineering
Multi-Site / B2C / Wealth Management
John Vucicevic is a dynamic executive with proven experience in expanding business and turning around underperforming companies in the financial services industry. Both promoted and recruited throughout his career, he advanced from Sales Representative to CEO / President over a twenty year period of time.
In addition to delivering as an individual contributor, John also has an ability to train and mentor both new and veteran sales people, helping them to become successful, high-performance team members. At Farm Bureau Insurance, he was specifically promoted to develop a training and coaching program which would improve overall sales performance. He then implemented this program in a region with six agencies. He worked with the agency managers and 100+ sales representatives. Demand for his advice and assistance exceeded his ability to keep up with all the requests. Sales in the region grew from $60M to $74M.
Another significant accomplishment included purchasing and turning around an Allstate Insurance Agency which had flat sales for three years prior. In the space of one year, he re-engineered operations, improving production 100%, and the agency qualified for company production promotions. Over the next two years, his team increased sales 30% to $25 million.
John received a Bachelor’s in Business Administration from St. Joseph’s College in Indiana. He is licensed in Series 7, 6, 63. He is also a Series 26 Investment Company Principal and a Chartered Life Underwriter from American College. Additionally he is a Certified IRA Distribution Expert and is licensed in Life and Health Insurance as well as Property and Casualty.
Bay City Financial, LLC.
2002 to Present
A $10M financial planning service
Purchased Allstate Agency in 2002, growing business from $3.5M to $9M in three years. The complexity of the deal required negotiating with three parties, Allstate Corporate, regional management and the individual seller, to close the deal. Agreeing to a purchasing model that met everyone’s needs was extremely challenging. In the end, John successfully negotiated terms about business value, client confidentiality, location, and staffing. He financed the purchase through a combination of bank and owner financing, conserving his own capital for future business expansion and operational improvements.
At the time, sales were flat, despite a stable base of customers and property and casualty sales of $3.5M. Allstate pursued John based on his reputation for growing businesses and his knowledge in property and casualty and his ability to implement in the financial services arena. Their intent was to increase property and casualty insurance sales and production and financial service production. He inherited the existing staff, most of whom were unmotivated due to the lack of prior good leadership.
He immediately hired additional sales staff and a support person to round out the veteran employee group. Then, John turned his attention to mentoring, developing and inspiring both the sales and the production personnel in the agency. He began advertising for the first time in the agency’s history. And he started a Client Advisory Board to gain input from current clients about service delivery and product array.
The Client Advisory Group indicated that they received virtually no assistance in managing or growing their portfolios. They felt ill-equipped to take any steps to enhance their financial holdings. John used their input to develop a financial training seminar which he then delivered to key clients. This led to a 150% increase in production and revenues through the addition of financial planning services. At the end of year one, sales were $5.5 million, customer retention rose from 84% to 92%, and referrals were plentiful.
Focusing his attention on the financial services aspect of the business, John grew sales to $9 million in year three, including $600K increases in insurance sales with financial planning increases of $3 million.
Realizing the untapped potential in the Florida market for wealth management services, John sold the property and casualty book of business in 2006 for $750K, realizing a 30% profit on this business. Revamping the company, he quickly opened two locations, one in Panama City Beach and the other in Destin, Florida. John aggressively pursued wealthy individuals approaching or in retirement to help them grow and protect their investments.
He developed seminar programs, often traveling nationwide to gather new ideas, and delivered them to target audiences in the 55-75 year age bracket. John gained national recognition and was soon asked to speak at industry, company and private events around the country. For example, he spoke at United Professional and Brokers Choice of America national conferences. He also spoke at local organizations including churches, Chamber of Commerce and specialty interest groups.
2001 to 2002
A fee and commissioned based financial planning business
Hired initially as Sales Manager of the Branch Office in Chicago, John was soon promoted to Managing Director of the office. Three months after his arrival, the company’s financial ratings dropped in the post-9/11 financial environment. As a result, the company was forced to draw on reserves to meet regulatory requirements. When the incumbent Director left the company, John was asked to take on the senior position.
Through exceptional leadership, John was able to sustain an operational business while the corporate organization sought and secured a buyer. This required great tenacity and the ability to motivate staff to stay with the company through the transition. He met weekly with employees and corporate staff to maintain momentum with the existing customer base.
One year after stepping into this difficult management responsibility, Almerica was sold. The company credited John for the strength of character that enabled him to hold the business together, maintaining current operations and clients, during a most challenging and turbulent period of time.
Farm Bureau Insurance
1998 to 2001
A property and casualty company
Promoted to oversee $18M agency serving farm business in Indiana through three locations and increased sales to $25M. This agency was initially extremely productive under the direction of a 25 year veteran. But when he retired, his replacement rapidly lost ground and the branch fell to last place among 35 branches in productivity and sales.
John immediately established relationships with the veteran sales staff, rebuilding credibility and trust. He created an Employee Advisory Group to identify why production was low and what changes were needed to improve sales and operations. It soon became clear a realignment of job functions was needed to allow the sales people to focus on generating sales and supporting customers to improve productivity and employee morale.
Through a reengineering process, job duties were redefined, disbursing functions to the most
appropriate job categories. Within a relatively short period of time, the company was working smoothly and efficiently and people were happy with what they were doing. All 35 representatives elected to stay under his leadership and production improved. The branch moved to top 10% in company performance.
Positioning the issue carefully with senior management, John successfully overcame resistance from the local Cooperative and repositioned office for more lucrative clients. John realized that the office location was actually preventing the agency from projecting a more professional image in the community and hindering more lucrative sales. The building was poorly maintained and not in a neighborhood conducive to reaching the target market.
The County Cooperative Board, which owned the company, could see no advantage to relocating. John understood that it was a political situation that needed to be handled with discretion and care to accomplish the needed strategic changes. He prepared a concise plan outlining the advantages to moving to a more suitable location. It required considerable negotiation, patience, and lots of studies. Over a three year period, John conducted due diligence. He obtained impact studies, addressed zoning, sewage and parking concerns, and dealt with a change in Board. Finally, the office was moved with production staying on track. The new building positioned the agency for higher value clients.
Agency Development Specialist
Farm Bureau Insurance
1996 to 1998
Trained and advised regional staff and increased sales from $60M to $74M. John was on the fast track toward management when the company decided to create a stepping stone position leading to the management role. The Agency Development Specialist was situated in the Home Office. The selected individuals all came from field operations and working in the corporate office allowed them to develop more well -rounded leadership skills
He was selected, along with five others. This group was challenged with developing the job description and procedures for the position under the direction of the senior leadership in the company. They also developed a training program to be delivered to new field and veteran agents to increase their sales capabilities. The plan outlined cross selling of products lines and a transition from property and casualty business to financial services.
Once the plan was approved, John was assigned to a region. It was his job to improve sales performance across six agencies. His compensation was based on the sales team’s production. In all, he worked with six agency managers, 75 agents and 35 staff and insurance adjusters. He had to enroll the agency managers in the value of participation in the program.
John started the program with early adaptors and soon gained a reputation amongst all the agency heads. The demand for advice and assistance accelerated. Production increased and mediocre agents were soon meeting or exceeding production requirements. New agents were productive earlier and veterans got better.
Farm Bureau Insurance
1983 to 1996
Hired into a training position, John qualified for company production promotion in a record breaking six months (typical advancement time was twelve months).
His first account was neglected and produced very little in ongoing commissions. John built relationships with the client and over three years grew his commission from $34K to $75K (1980’s dollars). He accomplished this through high quality, hands on service to his customers and was recognized by his community as premier agent and financial planner.
John’s first manager and mentor was approaching retirement and his focus on training and mentoring of new agents was ebbing. Seeing an opportunity to make a contribution, John took on the role and built relationships with the younger agents. He soon was helping many people learn the business and advance financially. This also meant the agency maintained a leadership role in the company at large.
With continued growth in personal sales, his eagerness to help others, and the resulting contribution to overall company performance gained recognition for John and he was soon seen as a high performance sales person with high potential for advancement. This is what led to his positioning on the fast track, his selection as Agency Development Specialist and his eventual promotion to Agency Manager
Personal, Professional, Community Service
Financial Authority Regulatory Agency (FINRA)
Million Dollar Roundtable
National Association of Independent Financial Advisors (NAIFA)
National Association of Security Dealers (NASD)
National Ethics Bureau (NEB)
Security and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Best of Bay Financial Planning, Better Business Bureau
Elite IRA Expert
Member, Kiwanis Club
Member, Scottish Rite
Member, Masonic Lodge
Leader, Scout Troop 302
Member ACO Club