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Leadership Thoughts

Love What You Do: Start a Career with WoodmenLife

The path to success

Kyle’s Savage’s story is like many others. Many others who are current or former college graduates, wondering what their future career will be. While looking for work right out of school with no job experience, not everyone knows exactly what path they will take in life or what job will lead them to a rewarding career that will support their family. Savage is Director of Recruiting Sales Manager Development at WoodmenLife in Omaha, NE. He is a testament to the fact that trust, hard work, dedication, and the passion to help others are keys to success and happiness.

For some, a career path is clear the first day they set foot in a college lecture. For others, the decision is made after graduation. Savage has a word of advice for recent college graduates who are in search of a career; “If you want to join a company that will give you experience, guidance and stability, one that will reward you for hard work, allow you to have a flexible schedule and potential to earn excellent income, WoodmenLife is that company.”

Small town to big opportunity

Savage attended SE Oklahoma State University in the small town of Durant, OK on the Oklahoma-Texas border. After graduation, he pondered attending graduate school to become a pastor. His plans soon changed as he married and decided to begin work. He took a job at a local call center selling satellite TV service, while applying for other jobs online. Now that he was married, he’d need a steady income to start his new life with his wife. “I wanted to make sure that my wife and I would have a good life together,” said Savage. The work was hard, but he was good at it. However, there was one problem. With more than 600 employees, the call center wouldn’t offer much upward mobility nor earning potential.

After performing flawlessly and being promoted to a mid-level management position, Savage soon became frustrated with the reality that he was surrounded by other managers who had worked many years at the same position and were stuck with little chance of any significant wage increases. “I had watched all of these employees in management positions basically staying there until someone retired. Only then would they move up,” said Savage.

He knew that it would be a long time until he made any significant advancements. The ceiling seemed impenetrable.

Little did Savage realize, but life was about to take a positive turn. He and his wife learned they were expecting a baby. Even with the good news, his frustration grew because interviews for new work were few and far between. To Savage, the prospect of finding work seemed daunting. He knew he would have to relocate to a larger city, gain more specific experience, and commute a long distance to work. He had to make a change. “We loved living in Durant, but the opportunity just wasn’t there,” he exclaimed.

A life-changing meeting

One day, during a conversation with the call center’s part-time human resources generalist, Savage’s life took an unexpected turn. The woman realized he was desperate to make a better living for his family and she offered some helpful advice. She told Savage that she used to work for WoodmenLife until she became a stay at home mother and decided to cut back her hours and work at the call center. She told him of the successful career she’d had at WoodmenLife, and explained that a career selling insurance and retirement products could be extremely lucrative and rewarding.

By the end of their conversation, Savage had found a new career one that required no previous experience, no relocation, flexible hours, an excellent benefits package1, and most of all, one that would help him support his family. He’d also become a part of a network of other sales professionals whose main focus is to protect families, support their communities and their country. “It was a chance meeting that really opened my eyes to what else was out there. I knew I had sales skills through selling at the call center, but I also could talk to people and enjoyed doing that. It was my opportunity to work hard and be rewarded,” said Savage.

A new beginning

Selling WoodmenLife products2 would mean going on a commission-based pay scale, which was one of Savage’s fears. At first, this seemed a bit scary, as his main goal was to make more money for his family and never miss a paycheck. He shared those fears with the WoodmenLife team. The WoodmenLife Sales Manager told him that sales isn’t luck. If you work hard, trust the system and the business, and do exactly what they tell you to do, he would be successful. Savage accepted the position and put his faith in the experienced sales professionals at WoodmenLife.

“I was still skeptical, and didn’t quite know what to expect. I listened to what they told me and did everything by the book. I never did miss a paycheck and my hard work was paying off. This is a business where you determine your success.” said Savage.
The system he’d been taught to trust and rely on was working. Savage received continual training and support from his Sales Manager. This served as a constant reminder that he’s part of something bigger than selling insurance and retirement products. He’s part of his community and part of an organization that truly cares about its team members and the families it serves. WoodmenLife had not let him down. Savage continued to work hard and listen to the guidance and mentorship he was offered.

A realization

As Savage focused on making a steady paycheck for his family, he hadn’t realized what the bigger picture was in his new career until one day he was greeted by a man on the street. “I recognized the man as he approached me. I had recently spent time with him in his living room listening to his needs and recommending solutions that matched his family’s needs,” said Savage. The man addressed him by his first name, hugged him with a tear in his eye and thanked him for spending time with him not so long ago. The man’s life had recently changed.

He was extremely grateful for the fact that WoodmenLife had stood by its promise to protect his family in their time of need. “I realized then that my career was much more than simply making a paycheck or a sale. It meant that I was truly helping others who had families just like mine,” said Savage. “It had become more about the impacts made on people in a positive way.”

The difference

“WoodmenLife is different. WoodmenLife is an organization that takes great strides to make the community you live in a better place. Those who purchase WoodmenLife products become members3 – members who are part of a community that shares a common commitment to family, community and country. Members protect one another and invest time, treasure and talent back into the communities they live in. This bond is shared throughout the country.” – Kyle Savage

To start your WoodmenLife journey visit

1. Representatives are independent contractors and are not employees of WoodmenLife. However, certain full-time life insurance sales agents may be treated as statutory employees for employment tax purposes (See: IRS Publication 15-A).
2. As part of WoodmenLife’s screening process, candidates for a Representative contract will be required to complete a criminal background check, a credit check (where required for contract), a drug screen, and reference checks. Any contract offer will be contingent upon successfully passing the above.
3. An individual becomes a member by joining our shared commitment to family, community and country, and by purchasing a WoodmenLife product.

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WoodmenLife was founded in 1890 as a not for profit. The organization gives back to its nearly 700,000 customers, who join together in a commitment to family, community and country. With a legacy of financial stability, WoodmenLife offers quality life insurance and retirement products. To learn more about WoodmenLife, visit