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For Lauren Obermann, work is a lifelong passion

Lauren Obermann is an agent at Vittetoe Insurance in Washington where she handles the family agency’s property and casualty claims plus some Medicare services. (Kalen McCain/The Union)

Lauren Obermann, an agent for Vittetoe Insurance in Washington, has always been excited about the family business.

“When I was as young as 7 or 8 years old, my dad used to have to go to houses — before you could get it online or anything — and draw pictures of the floor plan and take photos,” she said. “I remember being really young and helping hold the tape measures, and hold his clip board, and write down measurements. From a young age, getting into high school, I always liked the idea of business.”

Once she set herself on that career path, Obermann said the choice to follow the family’s footsteps was natural.

“It’s been in the family a long time, dad started 30 years ago,” she said. “Since growing up, I really wanted to be part of the family business, I really never have looked into anything else.”

Since then, Obermann has embraced the work. As a producer at the agency, her main role is finding new clients, though she balances it with the customer service aspects of the work, ensuring that no two days ever look the same.

Lauren Obermann at her desk in the Vittetoe Insurance office. Once she decided to pursue a business career, Obermann said getting into the family business was natural. (Kalen McCain/The Union)

“I’m kind of a jack of all trades, the servicing and the producing part,” she said. “It just kind of depends on the day. We get tons of referrals and stuff like that, so sometimes I don’t have to go out and look too hard.”

Obermann has plenty to show for her accomplishments. Since her start at Vittetoe Insurance, the agency has more than doubled its property and casualty insurance clients.

“Mom and Dad mostly do the crop insurance, I’ve overseen the property and casualty side of things,” she said. “We’ve really grown in that. Growing that business has been my goal, and it’s really seen growth every year.”

More recently, Obermann started tackling Medicare supplements and advantage plans.

“Growing that business and helping people with choices has actually been kind of fun,” she said. “It’s one of those things where Medicare is changing all the time, and I think there was a need for that sort of help.”

Being good at the work doesn’t mean it’s easy, however.

“Probably making sure I’m getting to everybody, making everybody feel like they should, that can be pretty challenging because we do so much,” she said.

Sometimes the challenges of work aren’t exactly limited to the workplace. Obermann said one of the hardest parts of her job was maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

“The hardest part is probably quitting for the day,” she said. “Just because I’m dedicated to my job and I like to get everything done so I'm usually working at home as night as well. When you have a family business, I feel like it’s not just a job, it is kind of a lifestyle as well.”

Nonetheless, Obermann said that despite the challenges, there was nothing she’d rather do.

“I do enjoy it, I don’t know a lot of people that enjoy insurance, but I really do enjoy it,” she said. “I guess I like working with people, whether they’re clients for 20-30 years that I’ve known or somebody new.”

Comments: Kalen.McCain@southeastiowaunion.com