Sometimes It’s a Game of Balance Unbalanced

Why not start the week in the ER.

Lily had a bad, bad night Monday with fever and vomiting that just wouldn’t quit, so she ended up being taken to the ER to find out she had strep throat.  Antibiotics, no school for the week forces and more hand washing than is normal to me; my pretty stable schedule to need to be rebuilt to fit the needs of our in home sick bay.  “Ivonne?… HELP”.

Outside in the healthy world (maybe overstated, but compared to the leper colony in my home it seems fitting), there’s plenty of work to do.  But fist, I attended an annual luncheon put on by the EBPA at the Jonathan Club right in the middle of downtown LA.  This lunch event features a survey study by Willis Towers Watson regarding the employer perspective about benefits and the trends we should expect to be desired now and for the next 3 years.  This information is extremely valuable in order to understand what kinds of issues and concerns my clients and prospective clients are forecasting.  It fills my tool belt.  Strategies can now be built proactively instead of completely re-actively.  This brings peace in a world of insurance chaos in most cases.  Plus, the food and company was great too.

The rest of the week was filled up with preparing and presenting the PEO (Professional Employer Organization) concept as a way to possibly save money on healthcare, HR and payroll for business with 2-100 employees that have been punished by the rate mandates of the Affordable Care Act (the most pain being felt by the employers with over 50 employees).  It’s a tough move to make as an employer because it puts them into a “co-employer” relationship with the PEO.  It involves all new on-boarding (re-hiring) of your existing employees (often annoying and frustrating) and a transition to a whole new payroll company and system (mostly messy…YUCK!).  So, what’s the good news?  Well, the relationship brings benefits by allowing these employers to buy health insurance as a large group (giving them composite rates instead of age-banded rates) on great levels of coverage.  It offers more HR support and compliance management than businesses this size can usually afford.  All of this, while continuing to get the sales and service support we offer to our clients.  If it works cost-wise, it can be a win-win.  You get savings & ME.

Speaking of me, the band I’m in (Not In Public) got together for a very energetic and productive practice session.  Mostly always the highlight of my month.  It is such a great blessing to be able to do something I love with a group of people I love.  It’s the exact thing I need to even out to a degree my work/life balance.  I love it.

I finished the week with great news.

I had the pleasure of delivering a rate decrease.  You heard it right.  My clients’ Kaiser costs were reduced 5% with no change to their plans coverage.  An extremely rare occurrence.  Nearly extinct, in fact.  For me, though, I was able to capture this rare species of a renewal and deliver it with a contagious smile.  What a way to close a week.  Levi and I celebrate the moment with a beer at a nearby micro-brewery and call it a week.

The girl is good.  The week went very well.  My weekend is here and ready to be relished.

Super-Agent out.