|A Message from the 2012NAFE Co-Chair|
When I was asked to share my thoughts on why someone should attend the 2012 NIPA Annual Forum and Expo (NAFE), my first thought was, "What does an attendee get at the NAFE that they couldn’t get somewhere else?” We all get bombarded with continuing education opportunities through vendor webcasts, on-site events and other organizations’ conferences. We all have open access to the government agency websites, their Q&A’s and industry news updates. And, finally we all can pick up a phone, type an email or walk down to a colleague and pose work related questions. So, why attend the 2012NAFE?
What the 2012NAFE will give an attendee is the ideal setting for learning, interacting, networking and growing as a pension professional. The NAFE is what I would consider to be the premier educational conference for retirement plan professionals for a few reasons:
First, with the number of attendees itself around 500, it allows for a much more intimate environment for learning. You have the opportunity to hear and interact with the speakers, and you often have the opportunity to pose your own questions to the speakers between sessions and during breaks that may not have been covered. You will also find this same access to the IRS and DOL speakers that present during the conference.
Second, you will have the opportunity to interact with the vendors that create the framework in which our industry operates. Again, there will be opportunities to pose your own questions and concerns directly to vendors you may already use or to those you may want to use in the future. Rarely will you have a collection of vendors all in one place that can help you grow your own business.
Third, and maybe one of the most important things you will get out of attending the 2012NAFE, is the ability to network with many of the people that are instrumental in shaping the retirement industry. In my eyes, these are our experts in the field, and having the ability to friend them on a professional or even personal basis is invaluable. You may find a study group of "peers” to join or get LinkedIn to an industry group. You may even find an opportunity to be a NIPA volunteer on one of the different committees that help NIPA "go.”
Finally, the NAFE is going to be in a new venue for 2012. Yes, it is still in Las Vegas, but it will be held at Las Vegas’ hottest new hotel, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. And, the special NIPA room rate is $140 per night! Don't forget to book your room here.
The 2012NAFE will have a new look and some new speakers, but you can "bet” on the fact that you’ll be attending the best educational conference for the retirement plan industry.
For more details about the 2012NAFE, download the Advance Program and reserve your spot today.
Darren P. Holsey, APA, ERPA, QPA, QKA
Senior Plan Consultant
Premier Retirement Services, Inc.