Back from the ACLI Compliance and Legal Section Meeting

I am back in the office today after spending 4 days in Ft. Lauderdale at the 2010 ACLI Compliance and Legal Sections meeting. It is generally one of my favorite conferences of the year. This year one of the things I found most interesting was the juxtaposition of the first keynote speaker, Alice Schroeder, author of The Snowball, and her discussion of Warren Buffett’s fascinating approach to risk management, and the several keynote and breakout sessions on cloud computing and various related online/social networking issues. The speakers in the latter category were Michael Nelson, Visiting Professor of Internet Studies, in the Communication, Culture and Technology Program at Georgetown University and one of his graduate students, Ben Gentry.

I am very interested in new technologies and how I can use them in my business and professional development and I came away with some interesting ideas to explore in that regard. In fact, I was e-mailing Kitty Cole, my Director of Multimedia Marketing, from the conference with excited notes…What about this? Should we try that?…Do you think we could do this?… Being able to move quickly when I am excited about something is one of the many things I love about having my own business. I am looking forward to our first real conversation about some of them later today.

But I am also thinking about Warren Buffett’s approach to risk management. While I was at the conference, I bought Ms. Schroeder’s book on my Kindle and am thoroughly enjoying it! (It made my thunderstorm-delayed trip home much more pleasant last night) Making fast decisions based on the kind of excitement I felt when thinking of all the ways I could use “the cloud” certainly is not how he achieved his extraordinary success.

All together there was much at the conference that made me realize how much I love what I do and the fact that I do it in the context of my own business. I am passionate about compliance and I really enjoy the substantive work that we do here. But I also love being a business owner and thinking about new and creative ways do quality work for our clients.

I have come back to the office a bit tired, but also truly energized to look at what both Warren Buffett and cloud computing have to offer, as I work at keeping my current clients satisfied with my company’s work and I simultaneously look to grow that business. I remain very grateful for the opportunity my clients give me every day to do this work!