- February 2011: Vol. 23 No. 2

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Different Planets: And You Thought MEN Were from Mars and WOMEN Were from Venus …

by Geoffrey Dohrmann

The landmark Survey of the Plan Sponsor Community commissioned by NAREIM in 1994 pointed out that one of the plan sponsor community’s greatest concerns was the investment management community’s apparent inability to listen, to really understand their needs, and to translate those needs into meaningful solutions that work.

Recent up-dates to that survey — including our own — suggest that, while some efforts have been made in the right direction, not much has really changed on the communications front. In fact, most plan sponsors seem to trust their managers about the same — or less — than they did back in 1994 (and they didn’t trust them at all, then).

This is nothing new, of course. Plan sponsors and investment managers have never been able to communicate very well, and trust has never been high. There is a reason for this, however. The language and culture of the plan s

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