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What do you get out of your participation on these message boards?


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I'd like to write up an article -- prolly six or seven paragraphs -- to attract new participants on these message boards.

I'll advertise it on the daily and weekly BenefitsLink newsletters.

What is it about the message boards that causes you to participate -- i.e., to ask questions and post reply/answers? What have been the benefits for you?

Also, if you'd rather write the article instead (or co-write it), I'd be delighted to have a volunteer!

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Dave:  It's quite simple.  Reading what's posted, and selectively responding keeps me grounded with reality in the industry.  We tend to get isolated in what we do specifically, exactly how we do it (especially when stuck with legacy processes and solutions that haven't been challenged in a long time), and what our problems of the day entail.  Reading here, 1) I see more of what goes on in the industry - and learn from it, and often can focus my attention on how to achieve that - or avoid it, without having to go through trial and error; and 2) I see alternatives that may be available to resolve the issues I have to deal with.  This place also allows me to "flex" my academic muscle and explore things that maybe have never occurred in my career, play with hypotheticals, or hypothetical extensions of real issues, and often "debate" with others who have different experiences, perceptions and approaches to the same issues.  I learn.   I teach.  I explore.  Makes me a better professional.

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1.  I like knowing that I am not the only one experiencing some of the issues presented.

2.  I have been able to help out others, and others have helped point me in the right direction.

3.  Daily reminders that there are very few things in our industry that are black and white.  

4.  I often see things addressed here before other message boards catch up them.

Pamela L. (Bobersky) Shoup CEBS, RPA, QKA

AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc.

100 Terra Bella Drive

Youngstown, Ohio 44505

800-451-2865

www.amibenefit.com

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Yep.  Also, I've been known to use it as a research tool.  For example, when I can't remember what reg to look for, i might get a useful prompt from someone else's comment(s).

I'm a retirement actuary. Nothing about my comments is intended or should be construed as investment, tax, legal or accounting advice. Occasionally, but not all the time, it might be reasonable to interpret my comments as actuarial or consulting advice.

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Ditto on previous comments. While I've been able to help some people, I have to say this board has been a net gain for me - I've learned so much over the years. There is also great comfort in knowing that other professionals struggle with many of the same issues, and there often isn't a perfect answer/solution. And, many a time when I'm chasing my own tail, someone looking at a question with fresh eyes sees the solution instantly, and I think to myself, "You darned fool, why didn't you think of this already!" Many times I have saved a great deal of time due to the helpful comments and advice available here. It's a great resource for experienced professionals, AND for newbies.

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Dave, As a solo practitioner in the labor and employee benefits sector since ERISA's enactment (closing on 50 years) , I've come to rely on Benlinks to: 1) keep me apprised of current issues and developments ; and 2) provide access to problems and their resolutions encountered by other experienced practitioners . I've always found that Benlinks levels the playing field between we solos and those extraordinarily competent 100 attorney firms.

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Dave, I agree with the earlier comments too.  But in particular for me, I have found this forum to be more professional.  Some of the other forums I belong to come across as teenagers yelling at each other or at times providing useless information that they believe is accurate but is not.  BTW, I am a group health guy so there is not as much for me here, but what is here does tend to be helpful.

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Hi Dave - I like the fact that I can get different views/takes on situations (including situations I may not have experienced yet) and, as others have mentioned, that you can be brought to clarity on issues where you may not have been seeing the big picture.  Been doing pension administration for a long time and appreciate that interaction between posters, moderators, etc.   Lighthearted moments help too every now and again although it has been hard without Mr. Poje :)!

 

 

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I have learned more on these boards than any credential program I have gone through. Those programs are excellent, but it is impossible for them to cover the amount of information that comes through these message boards. There are some incredibly intelligent commenters that I have come to trust over the years (I know that is scary based on a message board, but it is true). They have helped me more than they will ever know and I am grateful to them (all of you!!). 

Thank you!!!

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Fun to read; almost always learn something; feel helpful when I can participate in responding to someone's problem or question!

Patricia

Patricia Neal Jensen

Vice President and Nonprofit Practice Leader

| QBI, an Ascensus company

21031 Ventura Blvd., 12th Floor

Woodland Hills, CA 91364

E patricia.jensen@QBILLC.com

P 818-449-6096

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