On what's the perfect ratio of property/casualty insurance revenue to employee benefits revenue, many agencies strive for a 50/50 split, using the steady growth of group health insurance premiums to offset the cyclical boom and bust of the property/casualty underwriting cycle. Few succeed in reaching that golden ratio, and J. Smith Lanier & Co in West Point, GA, is no exception. However, the agency has built a thriving employee benefits and financial services practice; and it is a rapidly growing component of the agency's revenue, fueled by the acquisition of new business and the development of human resources and employee benefits support services. J. Smith Lanier made a strategic decision to diversify from an exclusive property/casualty orientation, says COO Gary Ivey, moving toward a more sophisticated risk management approach to the needs of its evolving customer base. According to Philip Saussy, director of employee benefits operations at J. Smith Lanier, the cost of group health insurance remains the number one issue for employee benefits customers.