Four decades later: Clemmons insurance agent reflects on extensive career

Published 12:08 am Thursday, November 2, 2023

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CLEMMONS — Even after 40 years in the insurance business, David McCall has not lost sight of what matters the most — his clients.

McCall doesn’t consider his clients customers. He looks at them more like family. After all, he has been with many of them during some of the lowest points in their lives.

“Some people don’t have anybody, and we are their only ones,” McCall said. “If you only help that one person that day, God bless ’em, and God bless you for doing that because that is the thing you are supposed to do. It’s not about making money. It’s about helping people.”

Donning a cape and saving the day has driven McCall throughout his four decades in insurance.

“Everybody wants to be a hero,” McCall said. “I like being a hero in the insurance business. People come to you with their problems and concerns. I call us solution architects. People bring us their problems, and we find them solutions.”

McCall acknowledged that cultivating relationships takes time and a personal investment.

“We know trust is something you cannot get at the grocery store, and you can’t trade it in if you lose it,” McCall said. “We really try hard to start off on the right foot. I would rather keep the door open and wait for the right time than to force something on somebody and then have regrets, or we have regrets.”

McCall has run McCall Insurance Services since 1983. He opened up a month before his first daughter, Mary Beth, was born. Mary Beth died about 10 years ago, but McCall’s other daughters, Taylor and Molly, currently work for their dad. Even after all those years, McCall said he is not ready to hang up his cleats just yet, so he is taking this time to share the secret sauce recipe with his two girls.

“I call it osmosis,” McCall said. “It is absorbed by just hanging around. I listen, and they listen, and they absorb it that way.”

Around the office, several catchphrases and perspectives are being transferred from father to daughter.

“I use the phrase … we service what we sell, and there is another phrase I use … you buy the ticket and leave the driving to us,” McCall said. “Your ticket is your premium. As long as you pay your premium, we will service your account.”

McCall has a deep vault where numerous expressions encapsulate his professional perspectives. For the man who had childhood dreams of being a sports broadcaster, it makes sense he is able to paint a colorful picture.

“I wanted to be a sports announcer,” McCall said. “I would still love to do that. I am not through with this life yet.”

As Molly points out, though, one phrase has risen to the top.

“You do the things for the right reasons, you are going to get the right results,” Molly said.

McCall’s daughters recognize the importance of learning from their father.

“A great gift that we can take from my dad is that he has been around so long,” Molly said. “What agents are doing now is not what he was doing back then. Back then, it was going door to door and talking to people about insurance. There is stuff that he has learned, like how business was handled back then, that people are not doing now.

“We are learning a lot more from him than he may realize. We want to run things the way that he is running things now. When you see on the door that we service what we sell we want to keep that true to.”

A long career has not come without a price. McCall laments the toll that his long hours took on spending time with his family.

“I did read a devotional this morning about if you do all the work and no family time, you have neglected your family,” McCall said. “In a regretful way, I do have regrets over that. If you look back over 40 years, you do what you do because you gotta do it.”

That’s why he is happy to have the girls around the office nowadays. It has put a pep in his step and inspired him to stick around a little longer.

While most people would think 40 years was sufficient for a career, McCall said he’s not quite ready for retirement.

“I am going to make it to 50,” McCall said. “Somehow, some way.”

McCall Insurance Services is located 2511 Neudorf Road Suite G, in Clemmons.