Focusing on our skill levels is logically primary, but I kind of like the idea that it is impossible not to look at the gun, see the high brass shot shell on the elevator, and know it is loaded. I have to consider not just my skills, but those of my wife, daughter, son and the occassional adult visitor. I don't want anyone mistakingly thinking the gun is not loaded.
In the event of an emergency, I also don't want anyone having to guess whether or not they need to shuck it to chamber a round. If the action is open and they see the shot shell, they know all they have to do is close the action to go.
I would hate to be away when someting bad happened, someone grabbed the 870 but when they pulled the trigger it went click.
Your old agency system was geared toward professionals. That isn't me or my family.