Family Is Key To Success

Family Is Key To Success

by Steve Gamel

Neatly displayed on a bookshelf in Jim Bridges’ office are two hats. The first appears to be barely worn and has Jim Bridges State Farm stitched on the front. The other, much older in comparison, is a Jim Bridges Sporting Goods hat.

For those who are longtime clients and friends of Jim’s popular insurance office in Bartonville, don’t worry – he’s not moonlighting in his spare time. But there is a story between the two hats, which go a long way in proving this is a man who cares more about family and having a positive impact on his community than being just another insurance salesman.

As the story goes, the two hats are Jim’s way of honoring his grandfather, who went by the same name and owned several sporting goods stores in Fort Worth. The elder Jim and wife, Helen, were the true representation of what it means to be a family-owned business. They worked together for 50 years, and many family members, including their children and spouses, all had a role in the company. That included young Jim, who went by “Jimmy” at the time.

“My mom and dad, aunt and uncle, and grandparents all lived on the same street while I was growing up,” Jim said. “I remember we’d always go to my grandparent’s house to talk about how things were going at the store. My dream was to one day own my own business, and probably take over his store. We were really close.”

While he never got into the sporting goods business, Jimmy honored his grandfather by shortening his name to Jim and proudly displays the two hats in his office. Between them is a framed photo of his grandfather. “He’s why I do what I do,” Jim said. “I’ve branded myself to be more than just an insurance guy. This is a family business, and I want to be known as the type of guy who looks out for his community.”

While State Farm offers a wealth of superior services to meet all your insurance needs, Jim believes its successes both locally and nationally are merely the outcome of good people doing good things for others. State Farm targets clients who crave a relationship-based way of doing business and want their own insurance advisor at their fingertips. After all, that’s what a good community-minded company does. Marrying community and business is a huge part of Jim’s success and growth, as is incorporating his family.

He and wife, Morgan, have three children in Katelyn, 11, Jake, 8, and Cary Grace, 4. Morgan has been the behind-the-scenes backbone of his agency since he first started following in his grandfather’s footsteps in 2011. The couple also opened a second location in Cross Roads in 2016. “The clients we are looking for are those who want to have that personal interaction,” Jim said. “We want to be the person who explains the coverages to you, helps you build the right policies, and protects all the things that are important to you. I want to have those relationships. That’s how we are built.”

He added, “And with all that said, I’d be nothing without a strong team. Amanda Gibson runs my second office, and she’s someone I’ve been friends with since college. My team is just as much a reason for our success.” Jim sees the agency as a platform he can use to help others. He looks for ways to be involved in his community, and in 2016 was the first person elected to the Lantana Homeowners Association. He’s also a charter member of Lantana Cares and is on the safety committee for the water district.

His biggest contribution came just last year shortly after Hurricane Harvey ravaged Houston and its surrounding areas with widespread flooding. Jim partnered with Mission Moms to start up a collection of supplies locally and, in a matter of 10 days, collected everything from bleach to dog food, toiletries, paper towels, canned goods, and other miscellaneous supplies – to the point where many of the paper towel boxes touched the ceiling.

“If I had to guess, I’d say we had $20,000 worth of supplies, and it was great to see the community come together,” said Jim, who with a friend loaded up two trailers and drove the supplies to Houston. “We even had to close early one Friday because of all the stuff that was coming in.”It’s that attitude that continues to make Jim Bridges not only the local State Farm agent you need to be doing business with but also the guy who is continuously looking out for other people. And that’s a selfless business mindset any grandfather can be proud of.

“I feel like I have this platform here at State Farm, and I need to be doing more,” Jim said. “I’m always looking out for the community. I care about my neighbors.”

 

Jim Bridges State Farm Agency | 940.241.2060 | Located in Bartonville Town Center


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