* Insurance firms present on family-friendly lists. Several insurance companies earned recognition for their family-friendly policies in two national magazines this fall. Appearing on the Working Mother list of the 100 best companies for working moms were (in alphabetical order): Allstate Insurance Company (which made it into the top ten), CIGNA, John Hancock Life Insurance Company, Lincoln National Life Insurance Company, MassMutual Life Insurance Company, and UNUM Life Insurance Company of America. And in Business Week's second survey of family-friendly corporate policies, three insurance firms landed in the top 20: UNUM, Lincoln National, and CIGNA.

* LIMRA paper: So, where's the news? Life Insurance Marketing Research Association (LIMRA) recently announced a new paper in its Strategic Issues Series called "The Marketing Edict: The Impact of the Decline in Individual Life Sales on Future Distribution." While a full read of the report might be fruitful, a press release suggests there's not much news here. The release says the paper seeks to answer the question, "What are the best marketing strategies for North American life insurance companies in the next century?" However, its six recommended "actions" for companies to create a marketing strategy seem obvious even to a non-marketer. These include the ideas that companies should: "Examine their specific markets and their needs" and "Select a distribution strategy (or nondistribution strategy) that will work in their marketplace."

* MDRT 1997 Annual Meeting tapes for sale. Dollar Round Table made 80 audiotapes and 25 videotapes of the speakers and special events at its 1997 Annual Meeting. The motivational Main Platform talks, ranging from surgeon Leo Frangipane to wheelchair marathoner Art Berg, cost $50 on video for MDRT members, $62.50 for nonmembers. Tapes are $6 for members, $8 for nonmembers. Contact MDRT at (847) 692-6378; fax (847) 518-8921.

Your Logo Here World's First Smoke-Free Cruise Ship Carnival Cruise Lines next year introduces the world's first smoke-free cruise ship--the MS Paradise--with a completely nonsmoking environment including the open decks. Currently under construction in Helsinki, Finland, the new $300 million vessel will sail from the Port of Miami beginning in the fall of 1998.