Posted by: Gary Thompson | December 17, 2012

Succession Planning


At every organization, there are key employees who are integral to the survival of the company. These individuals may be top executives, owners, shareholders or those who have expert knowledge of company processes and services. To preserve the organization in the event that one of these employees leaves, many human resources professionals engage in succession planning. This is the process by which you determine specific critical roles within your company, identify and assess possible successors for these roles, and provide these successors with the necessary skills and training for future opportunities. By creating a careful plan of action, your organization can ensure the least business disruption in the event that a key employee leaves.

Need for Succession Planning

Organizations need to develop initiatives to prepare for employees who unexpectedly quit, move to a different position within the company, are terminated or fail to fulfill the role they were hired for in the organization. Recruitment and training of top talent can be difficult, time consuming and expensive, particularly when trying to fill a vital position that was suddenly vacated. It is generally more effective to recruit from within to fill these roles and succession planning can make this process more efficient.

Succession Planning Process

The following activities are typically part of the succession planning process:

  • Determining the roles and skills critical to the company’s growth
  • Identifying key employees who could fill other roles in the event of a vacancy
  • Identifying and understanding what employees filling those positions will need to effectively make the transition
  • Starting to train backup employees on various roles to prepare them for a possible unexpected role shift
  • Ensuring that all high-level employees recognize and understand their career paths and the roles that they are being trained to fill
  • Identifying key employees in all areas of the business and working to ensure they are highly engaged and satisfied with their role and the organization itself
  • Understanding the time needed to back-fill key roles
  • Reviewing, evaluating and improving the succession planning process as role filling takes place

Losing a key employee can be devastating if you are not prepared. Succession planning can help ensure minimal interruption so that your business can continue as usual.

Please see our video on Succession Planning for your personal affairs as well as your businesses.

If you would like more information on Succession Planning please feel free to contact Gary Thompson with CS&A Insurance at 800.999.1109. If you would like more information on CS&A Insurance visit our website. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Posted by: CS&A Insurance | December 13, 2012

Mary Lewis on Burglary, Kidnap and Ransom Coverage

Tom Chappell and Mary Lewis of CS&A Insurance discuss coverages for Burglary, Kidnap and Ransom. These are not overly discussed today but are becoming real concerns for home owners and business people. High net worth individuals need to know that they can become targets of these types of crimes and to protect your valuables as well as your self and other loved ones is something that should be talked over and discussed with your insurance agent and other advisers. One example is valuables such as Diamonds, Furs, Bonds Certificates, and precious metals and jewelry in your home safe… Are your valuables protected? Most premium carriers such as Chubb, Firemen’s Fund, ACE and AIG/Chartis offer products to cover these types of incidences.

Link to Video on YouTube:

If you would like to know more about Burglary, Kidnap and Ransom coverage on your insurance policy please don’t hesitate to call Mary Lewis with CS&A Insurance at 800.999.1109 for more information.

Also don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube Channel where you’ll find a lot more information that concerns your personal and business insurance. Check out our web site, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Posted by: Mary Lewis | December 10, 2012

Returning Home After a Natural Disaster

CS&A Natural Disasters

Report the loss as soon as possible.

Most policies require you report your loss promptly. Some have added policy conditions that you must report within one year after the date of loss.  Provide a description of damage and have your policy number handy. Make a note of the claims adjuster’s name, phone number and claim number.

Protect yourself and others.

Be careful about entering a damage building, report downed power lines or gas leaks to the utility companies.

Protect your property.

Take reasonable steps to protect your property from damage. Check with your company if they will pay to help protect your property.

Prepare a list of damage or lost items.

If possible keep damaged items so the adjuster can see them. If that’s not possible, take photos or videos. Prepare a room by room list of contents with photos will help your remember items that have been destroyed.

Keep your receipts if you need to relocate.

If you can’t live in your home while repairs are being made, keep records as most homeowner policies will reimburse you for additional living expenses.

Return claim forms.

Fill out claim forms sent to you by your insurance company as soon as possible. An adjuster will want to inspect the damage to your home. The company will give you an advance on necessities and issue additional checks if needed. If you have a mortgage on your house, the check for the repairs to the dwelling will usually be made out to both you and the mortgage company.

If you would like more information on Natural Disaster Coverages please don’t hesitate to call Mary Lewis with CS&A Insurance at 800.999.1109 or you can view CS&A’s Natural Disaster Coverages Magazine.
Don’t forget to check out or website and “LIKE” our Facebook page. You can also find more information on our YouTube Channel.

Posted by: Gary Thompson | December 5, 2012

Succession Planning

Gary Thompson from CS&A Insurance discusses Succession Planning for the Business Owner. Are you prepared for the future? Have you set in motion a plan to carry on your business in the event of retirement or company disaster. If you are a business owner and wish to carry on your business into the future then succession planning is a crucial topic that needs to be addressed with you and your directors and officers.

If you have any questions about Succession Planning or Retirement Planning please do not hesitate to call Gary Thompson at 800.999.1109. You can find more information on our web site Also you can follow us on Twitter:

Posted by: CS&A Insurance | December 3, 2012

The Cost of a Bad Hire


A formal hiring process is a critical step in helping a company avoid a bad hire. One bad employment decision can lead to several pitfalls for a business.

So you’ve found the perfect potential employee. They handle themselves professionally, are well groomed, and have all the right answers to the questions. Your gut tells you this person is going to be a perfect fit for the company, and you know they will be a great hire. You don’t bother to call any references or run a background check. Too many employers rely on their own judgment and read of people when making their hiring decisions.

Most employers understand creating a safe work environment is extremely important, however few realize this process needs to start before a hire is even made. Take a business where making deliveries is a daily task for a typical employee. The company fails to perform the necessary motor vehicle checks when hiring a new employee. The employee arrives his first day on the job, is handed the keys to a company vehicle, and off he goes. The employer is unaware this new employee has 3 speeding tickets and has been in 3 “At-Fault” accidents. All of the company’s assets are now riding in the trunk of the vehicle driven by the new employee. It will only take one accident and the entire company will be at risk.

Many businesses do not want to incur the costs associated with proper pre-employment screening and background checks. Employers need to realize the costs associated with a formal hiring process are a fraction of what is at risk if a wrong employment decision is made. A bad hire can not only result in higher insurance premiums but can lead to even larger issues, including the livelihood of the entire company.

If you have questions or comments please leave a reply to this post. If you have more specific questions please don’t hesitate to call Travis Wright at CS&A Insurance at 800.999.1109 Today! You can also check out our website, Thank you.

Posted by: CS&A Insurance | November 26, 2012

Tom and Mary Talk Weather Related Claims

Tom Chappell and Mary Lewis discuss weather related insurance and claims. In recent months Nashville, Franklin Tennessee has well as Middle Tennessee have experience severe wind and hail storms. With the recent Hurricane Sandy, people need to know what covered with regards to their home owners insurance as well as weather related claims. Tom and Mary talk about how this relates to insurance claims, roofing claims and insurance rate increases for all areas of the country.

If you have specific questions about your home owners insurance policy as it may relate to weather related claims or any other questions please do not hesitate to call Mary at 800.999.1109 or email her. Don’t forget to “Follow” our blog here at or visit our web site at for more information.

Posted by: Todd Lee | November 21, 2012

CS&A Insurance Wishes You a Happy Thanksgiving!

I never thought I would have to go through a Christmas section in a store to pick out a Halloween costume for my kids.  It seems “Christmas Season” keeps getting longer and longer each year as the marketing and merchandising starts earlier and earlier.  The stores know if they can get you to buy sooner you will buy more because the effect of the early purchases will go away and you start to wonder if you “have enough” and just one more thing is “ok”.  It saddens me to hear people wish Christmas would just hurry up and get here and they can’t wait for Christmas to be over.  I feel much of society is drug through the Christmas season without ever taking the time to stop and appreciate it for what it is supposed to be.  It is a hectic time of year and unless we dictate as individuals and families what we will and will not allow ourselves to do, the time and experience will get away from us.

With this thought in mind I can’t help but think about Black Friday. The hustle and bustle of the holidays is upon us and it’s really easy to forget that there are others with the same goals and obstacles on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Black Friday is notorious for accidents, rude and here in the recent years violent people not only on the road but also in the stores. Please remember to be courteous, selfless, hospitable and caring. It’s not worth being hurt or hurting someone to get the last low priced laptop or iPad. Next year there will be all new widgets and cogs for you to wonder about and haggle over. Please remember those in need as well.

This is a time of year to give Thanks and Love to everyone. We are all humans and need each other to make this world be better.
CS&A Insurance wishes everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted by: Christy Poteete | November 19, 2012

Longevity in the Insurance Industry

CS&A Insurance Franklin, Tennessee

I think Chappell, Smith & Associates, Inc. dba. CS&A Insurance has an outstanding rapport. Thomas Chappell and Charles Smith formed the insurance agency in 1981. They are still the owners of the business today. That is over 30 years of uninterrupted insurance service. Not only have they owed the business for that length of time, they still have some of the original employees on board.

Edward Brooks retired last year with over 27 years of service in the Life and Health Insurance business.

Ada Bridges retired last year with 29 ½ years of service in Personal Lines Insurance, as well as small Commercial Insurance.

The following group of Insurance Professionals has been employed at Chappell, Smith & Associates, Inc. dba CS&A Insurance for 15 years or more. The late Charles (Chuck) Clarkson had been in Commercial Lines for 28 years, when he passed this year. Mary Lewis has been in Personal Lines for 28 years. Carrie Davis has been our Accounting Manager for 19 years. I have been the receptionist/ Licensing Coordinator for 17 years. Joseph (Jodie) Folk has been in Commercial Lines for 16 years. Barbara Doss has been in Aviation Insurance in our Georgia Branch for 16 years. Christi McDonald has been in Aviation Insurance in our Tennessee Branch for 15 Years. We have many more employees with a number of years of service under their belts, but I couldn’t list all 40 employees in this one blog.

Perpetuation of CS&A Insurance  is one of our main focuses for this company. We rely on the experience and knowledge of our seasoned producers to help cultivate a new breed of insurance producer, that holds to a strong work ethic as well as traditional values. This has been the brand and image of CS&A Insurance for well over 30 years and will continue into our future. Also a structured and well planned mentor program is in place here that ensures this future and prosperity of this company.

Congratulation to Thomas Chappell, Charles Smith Jr. and the whole Chappell, Smith & Associates Group for their longevity in the Insurance World.

Posted by: Gary Thompson | November 15, 2012


You may or may not be aware that several Bush era tax cuts are scheduled to expire at the end of the year.  Many are referring to this as the looming ‘fiscal cliff’.  This will impact all of us in different ways.  Yes, all of us.  One thing you may wish to consider and seek guidance from your tax advisor is to convert your current funds to a Roth within your 401k or IRA.

The concept of a Roth 401k (and IRA) is an excellent retirement choice for saving money.  This allows you to put in money on an after tax basis and withdraw it tax free at retirement.  A traditional 401k allows you to make pretax contributions, but the withdrawals are taxed.  The reason you may wish to consider converting your existing plan to a Roth is to avoid the projected tax increases when you are ready to withdraw your funds.  The attached article explains the difference in a traditional and Roth 401k in more detail.  If you have any questions please feel free to let me know.

I encourage everyone to read in detail about the looming fiscal I found the information at this link to be helpful.

Here is a link to a helpful article “Savings Fitness – Employee Guide to the Roth 401K”

If you would like more information about this and other topics please follow this blog and visit our web site or don’t hesitate to call Gary at 800.999.1109.

Disclaimer: Myself nor CS&A is offering financial advice rather encouraging everyone to consult a qualified tax advisor to see if this option is right for you.  Education is the enemy of ignorance.

Posted by: CS&A Insurance | November 13, 2012

Health Care Moment Video Blog

Gary Thompson with CS&A Insurance posts his first Vblog on Health Care Reform. What will employers have to do next to stay compliant and avoid penalties by the government for Obama Care/Health Care Reform. Check out the first in the series of Video Blogs from Gary a Trusted Adviser with CS&A Insurance at the link below:

If you would like more info on Gary or CS&A Insurance please call 1.800.999.1109 or visit our web site:

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »