Kip and Natasha Baird moved to Edmond just after the turn of the century. Since starting the Baird Insurance Agency in 2004, they’ve focused on helping their customers by educating them and providing fast and friendly service.
Kip and Natasha grew up in the same small town but didn’t know each other well until years later at a homecoming celebration in their hometown. Natasha attended UCO in the early 2000s, and Kip moved to Edmond a year after she did. They fell in love with Edmond and have lived here ever since.
Getting into the insurance business
Before 2004, Kip wasn’t thrilled where he was working. They undervalued both their customers and employees, which didn’t sit well with Kip. “I knew I had to make a change,” he said, “and business ownership was the path to having the freedom to bring our values and standards in service to people.”
Kip had a friend who had been advising him for years to consider the insurance industry. That friend knew the industry well and advised Kip to look into Farmers Insurance Group. Kip and Natasha did some research. Then in late 2004, they started their agency.
Natasha shared, “I was working full time in management for another company, but I was able to help after hours with marketing and sales.” Things took off relatively quickly. Natasha continued, “Our business flourished quickly, so I transitioned to assisting with agency management full-time shortly after we opened.”
Helping and educating customers
One of the Bairds’ favorite things about their business is how they can educate and help their customers. Natasha shared, “More often than not, when we consult with someone, we find they are significantly under-protected.” That includes multiple types of coverage, from vehicle to home to injury to property. They enjoy educating and guiding those customers to get appropriate coverage.
“One of the most memorable situations,” Kip shared, “was when a client walked into our office white as a ghost. They had just been served paperwork for a lawsuit seeking significant damages.” With the Bairds’ help, that customer increased their coverage limits, and they were able to handle the damages within the new policy.
Kip likes to joke that construction and other similar jobs requiring demanding physical labor are hard. Insurance isn’t hard. Nonetheless, their work can be challenging at times. But Kip and Natasha enjoy that challenge.
Baird Insurance Agency has supported various nonprofits throughout the years. Their passion has always been to focus on local charities, especially those that benefit kids.
“In the past, we’ve raised funds for The Kids Place of Edmond,” Natasha shared. “We are currently working on partnerships with several other organizations.”
Of course, the pandemic has created challenges in giving back. For example, the Bairds’ daughter spent some time in the hospital when she was just fifteen months old. It was a scary time for her, but having toys at the hospitals helped. The Bairds enjoy helping others in similar situations by donating toys. However, with COVID restrictions, that’s not currently possible in the same way.
“There are issues keeping things sanitized,” Natasha said, “and [some] others aren’t accepting anything at this time. The coordination of new efforts has been a bit different this year.”
Signs of success
While success in life can be very different from success in business, it’s evident that family, community, and business are all important to the Bairds. In the past year, they’ve started new hobbies with their children, including a new YouTube channel, helped nonprofits in different ways, and continued to support their customers.
“The definition of success in life is very different, in our opinion, than the definitions of success in business,” Natasha said. “In business, it’s a combination of many things.” She shared that for them, success includes:
- Having extraordinarily high customer satisfaction and retention ratios
- Having a positive, engaging, and fun work environment for employees and customers alike
- Being one of the most efficient agencies in both the state and country
- Outperforming their peer group in growth
Regardless of your definition, it’s obvious the Bairds are succeeding and have made a meaningful contribution to Edmond’s business community.