Chairpersons Corner

Chairpersons Corner

by Van Beach

Method to our MADness

Welcome to our first "unbundled" edition of Newsdirect! I am sure some of you are wondering why this newsletter has been constructed in this format–a legitimate question. As background, let me take a bit of your time to fill you in on the "Big 4" initiatives that the section (the council PLUS its members) is pursuing and then describe how the newsletter format fits with these initiatives. These four initiatives are above and beyond the "standard" section activities and reflect a commitment to adding value in two fundamental ways:

  • Collaboration and Exposure: By increasing the opportunities for collaboration and exposure of actuaries both within the actuarial community and among those external to the actuarial profession.
  • Content: Developing and making available relevant content that will help actuaries do their current job better and will build the knowledge base required to move up to the next job.

The four initiatives are as follows:

  • Knowledge Community: Create a "knowledge community" within the Marketing and Distribution section where we build and grow a network of content and content experts.
  • External Outreach: Create relationships with external organizations to increase the collaboration among all professionals with an expertise in marketing, distribution, delivery and administration of financial services products.
  • Product Manager Survey: Conduct a survey of insurance company "product managers" to get a real–world perspective on the issues and knowledge base needed to become a leader of a multi–functional team that brings a product to market and on to profitability.
  • Archive Accessibility: Build an infrastructure to facilitate the easy retrieval of content (session transcripts, newsletter articles, etc.) through the SOA Web site.

How does the newsletter format fit with these initiatives? The new newsletter format will contribute to value through content, collaboration and exposure in the following ways:

  • The format will allow the articles to be more easily transferred to an archive and retrieval system, thereby creating more lasting value as the content can be searched and retrieved more easily.
  • The format is also more conducive to incorporating articles from other sources (like the DMAA) and exporting these articles to other journals and publications, thereby increasing both exposure and collaboration opportunities.

It is hopefully apparent through the change in newsletter format, the "Big 4" initiatives, and the commitment to creating value through content, collaboration and exposure–that there is a method to our MADness!

–Van Beach, 2006 MAD Section Chair