I subscribe to a daily email from ADVISEN, an organization that offers "productivity and insight for insurance professionals."
Advisen's FPN - Front Page News - is a round-up of insurance-related articles.
Insurance is a small, albeit critical, part of any Enterprise Risk Management program, but the real reason I faithfully read the daily email is for "insurance-related" gems.
The email for March 3, 2010, had the following headline sampling:
Parents sue Hunter Douglas in Boulder County after 3-year-old dies in blind cord
Advisen Contributor Content: Dodd-Frank, SEC Enforcement, Whistleblowers and D&O Insurance
Woman awarded $1.14M after Atlanta sidewalk fall
Arch Coal to pay $4 million to settle pollution claims [St. Louis Post-Dispatch]
Supreme Court rejects 'personal privacy' for corporations in Freedom of Information Act case [Los Angeles Times]
Monitor Liability Managers to Include Social Media Coverage in EPLI Policies
The above are just samples from one day's email.
Granted, not all AdvisenFPN headlines are of interest to practitioners, but a number do get my attention.
In particular, I followed the link to Monitor Liability Managers to Include Social Media Coverage in EPLI Policies, Supreme Court rejects 'personal privacy' for corporations in Freedom of Information Act case [Los Angeles Times], and Advisen Contributor Content: Dodd-Frank, SEC Enforcement, Whistleblowers and D&O Insurance.
Social media currently is the topic du jour for many organizations; its use and abuse are constant water cooler and board room agenda items. While the article is focused on insurance coverage, it should make practitioners aware that social media can be a weapon against an organization. Is the insurance cost justified? Not for me to say, but having publicized policies and procedures on social media use certainly is a proper concern for a practitioner.
Personal privacy is limited to persons; corporations, as AT&T discovered, are not included.
The Arch Coal bit reminds that plans and programs must be aware of the consequences of failing to adhere to government requirements, and, in some cases, industry standards- as was the case for Hunter Douglas (below).
The Whistleblowers blurb is a warning to carefully check, and recheck, insurance policies' fine print, and to make certain any changes during a renewal period are acceptable. Checking the policies may not be the practitioner's job, but it is the practitioner's job to raise the issue with management, or at least the program's sponsor.
Not every headline on the AdvisenFPN email rates my attention, but enough do that I would hate to miss a day.
Some items, such as Woman awarded $1.14M after Atlanta sidewalk fall and Parents sue Hunter Douglas give me pause. In both cases, the complaint is that the defendants failed due diligence - Atlanta failed either to maintain the sidewalk or failed to put up barriers. In the Hunter-Douglas case, the plaintiffs claim the defendants failed to follow industry standards to which the company apparently committed. This case currently is in litigation.
From an ERM perspective, both incidents could have, should have, been avoided by simple mitigation measures.
I devote perhaps 15 minutes to the AdvisenFPN each day. If I just read the headlines I'd be done much faster, but I always - always - find something ERM-related. It's 15 minutes well spent.