Monday, October 25, 2010

Top 10 Things I’m Looking Forward To at #PCMA11

I realize that many of you are planning to attend PCMA's Convening Leaders (Jan 9 – 12 in Vegas) and like you, I am excited to get onsite and experience the meeting. As a staff member, my involvement in the meeting and seeing all my members is one thing that I love most about my job.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how much work it is, how many early mornings or late nights are needed, or even how ugly my shoes are onsite (they are soooooo UGLY! - see previous posts), being there and absorbing the energy of our members really motivates me to work harder for you!

So, here is my first, of what may be many lists that I will be creating, top 10 list of things I’m looking forward to in Vegas:

10. Celebrating with the Award winners

9. Meeting a ton of new members

8. Giving back to the community through Hospitality Helping Hands

7. Seeing the Chapter Leaders – and celebrating the outgoing presidents

6. Party With A Purpose – enough said!

5. Kicking off a new committee year

4. Amazing keynote speakers

3. Fun and energizing general sessions

2. Fabulous evening events

1. Seeing YOU!

Let me know what you’re looking forward to…or what you hope you’ll see there. And, if it’s not already in the plans, maybe we can pull it off!


P.S. – Don’t forget that early registration end 11/3!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Don't Talk to Strangers...and other tips for tradeshows!

It is a general rule of thumb that it is impossible to go to a tradeshow and not talk to strangers.  Well, you could if you were really looking to sabbatoge your presence there.

I recently came back from a tradeshow where I talked to a man for about 10 minutes and at the end of the conversation I thought I might have a stalker - seriously!

So I was joking with some colleagues on a new rule I was implementing for our tradeshows - don't talk to strangers.  It was pretty funny and of course I wasn't serious, but it got me thinking that as a booth staffer you need to put up with so much more than just the logistics and travel that come with exhibiting - you have to be able to deal with humanity in a professional and positive way.

To make my point, I've come up with some tips on how to be a good attendee: 
  • Approach booth personnel with a smile.  Do not look like an ax murderer!
  • If the show is slow and you find it fun to go around and mess with exhibitors by making up stories/professions, etc. I recommend you head for the hills.
  • It is also not wise to bring up your hatred of anything that might be controversial like religion, politics, ethnicities, genders - keep it professional people.
  • If you've overstayed your welcome in a booth, take the hint and move along.
Admit it - you are smiling to yourself right now because you've experienced something similar - am I right?

So, it's not just about being a great booth staffer for your organization, it's about being able to think on your feet, deal with the unpredictable, and stay professional no matter what you come across!

Have a good story to tell?  Please send it along!


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tradeshows Revisited

We have had a busy few weeks with our tradeshow presence, and there is more coming this fall.  And, as I mentioned in a previous post, I am so not in love with how "paper oriented" tradeshows still are.  Why can't more be done electronically?

Today I come bearing the news that shipping needs to be looked at too.  For two of my recent shows I contracted for shipment through the show contractor.  Both times the shipping company refused to come to my office to pick up the shipment - they wanted ME to deliver it to them while they just parked out front.  WHAT?

I was in disbelief....and believe me the show contractor heard from me and made it right. But seriously people - really?!?!?!

Today was different... 

Today will be marked on the books as the day when a shipping company got it right.

Today will be marked as the day when the shipping company called to tell us they were on the way.

Today will be marked as the day when the shipping company showed up in my office, confirmed all my pieces were present and then THANKED ME, yes THANKED ME for using them!

Why oh why, is this the exception and not the rule? 

Please share your thoughts on this process...there has to be a better way!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Top 5 Things I Want To Read About...

Unlike a lot of top 5 lists around these days I would like to take a different approach, and thereby taking exception to a lot of the top 5 lists around these days, no offense. :+)

We all use SM for different reasons. I learn so much from my contacts on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter that if I were to give you things I don't want you to tweet about, I might miss something really cool.

So here's my list of what I want to read:

1. New and hot bloggers - please keep telling me who you're reading. I often go visit and have found some extemely interesting business perspectives/tips/tricks. Don't stop touting interesting people (or people to follow/friend/fan).

2. Work projects - if you are working on a project that someone out in the SM world could help you with...don't hold back - collaboration is one of the key things SM give us access to!

3. Great restaurants - while I often get hungry, and therefore sometimes angry, when I am not eating delicious food like you - I still want to hear if you're having a fantastic meal and where. It expands my knowledge base and gives me options of places to try.

4. Photos of your vacation, dog, cat, baby, husband, wife, friends, etc. - while we are connected to each other through SM we don't see each other F2F very often, if ever, so if you stopped posting photos of personal interests that are important to you we might not ever get a chance to learn more about you, find more commonalities between us, and therefore build a stronger relationship with you.

5. Interesting news - even if it's not industry related, you never know where you will get the inspiration for your next big idea. Post it especially if it's industry related...we all want/need to know - don't hold back.

For me SM gives me an opportunity to meet and connect with interesting people - if you stop doing the above because someone created a list that said you should stop doing these things, most likely I would stop following you because I wouldn't believe there was a person behind the name...


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Volunteers That Are Rockin My World - Go Membership Committee!

Hands down my Membership Committee is rockin my world these days.

I am so lucky to have an awesome membership committee that will tackle anything I put in front of them - always completing committee assignments on time and with a smile. In addition, they are so supportive of my goals for the year - I truly feel like I have an extension of my team with these dedicated volunteers.

So, as a group, they are my selection for most awesome volunteers this week!

Here's the list - give them some props next time you see or talk to them:

Robert Donahue, Disneyland Resort - Chair
Tom Casadamont - I&MI Media
Mike Dickinson - Travel Planners
David Fine - Broadmoor Hotel
Sherry Franklin - Renaissance Nashville Hotel
Adriana Molina - Starwood Hotels & Resorts
Armando Lazarte - Holiday Inn Express Springfield
Angela Musial
Greg Newton - Ottawa Convention Centre
Chris Nord - Hershey Resorts
Melissa Riley - Destinatio DC
Michele Sawka - Minerals, Metals and Materials Society
Belinda Waldo - Associated Luxury Hotels
Judy Wander - International Council of Shopping Centers
David Peckinpaugh - HelmsBriscoe, Board Liaison

Thank you thank you thank you for all you do for me and PCMA!


Death by forms!

As I prepare for five tradeshows in the next 60 days - I have to tell you I'm going a little bonkers making sure all the paperwork is filled out correctly and completely.

Thing that amazes me are all the paper forms still - why can't I do more online? I am filling out at least five forms per show for a 10 x 10 booth.

I think there is a real opportunity here.

I work in the event/tradeshow/association business - so I get it. There are many many players to make a tradeshow successful - I know that. So I'm not so much complaining, well...I guess I am complaining...but I'm pushing us to come up with some better best practices here.

The opportunities are endless - one form with all the stuff, electronic forms, one payment form.

What I would love is an electronic checklist that helps walk me through the event start to finish to make sure I get all the right forms filled out and that I opt out of services I don't need.

Someone out there has to be doing some innovative work with this - please let me know what it is and I will promise to help spread the word!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Volunteer Recognition - Traveling Super Stars!

I had the honor of traveling throughout Mexico in May with some spectacular PCMA members to talk about PCMA membership and trends in the meetings industry.

For this incredible dedication to PCMA and the industry I recognize:

Johnnie White, Cardiovascular Research Foundation
Leigh Wintz, Soroptomists International of the Americas
Dean Martin, Microsoft
David Peckinpaugh, HelmsBriscoe
Gary Schirmacher, Experient

We didn't just hit one city - we traipsed the entire country. Starting in Cancun, traveling to Mexico City and finally in Cabo San Lucas...all over a four day period.

Many thanks to Jesus Aparicio, Eventia for his personal attention to making sure these events were all a resounding success.

I'll write more about the sessions that were presented - as that is worthy of its own stay tuned!

Travel Safely!

I travel a lot for my job. Not as much as some, but more than others...roughly 8-10 trips per year.

Many times I'm traveling by myself and for my entire career I have not had any concerns of "traveling alone."

A couple years ago one of my teenage nieces asked me if I didn't get scared being in a hotel by myself. She asked, "Aren't you afraid to stay in a hotel by yourself? Aren't you afraid that something bad is going to happen to you?"

Seriously, I had never even thought about it like that...EVER!

BUT, it did make me pause and ask myself if I was being as safe as I could be. Was I doing everything I could to keep myself safe on the road. And so, like all travelers out there I was more vigilant about bolting the hotel door, using the in-room safe, etc.

This post is for all experienced travelers and those not so experienced - to give you the confidence to travel alone!

Basic tips for travel safety:
1. Secure your personal belongings at the airport
2. Lock and bolt your hotel room door
3. Take transportation from authorized areas only
4. Don't wear flashy jewlery or clothing - i.e. don't stand out in the crowd
5. Don't talk to seriously...I know you are not in grade school, but sometimes in our quest for being friendly we talk...just be cautious
6. While seeming paranoid (okay I might be!) - make sure your luggage gets in the cab at the airport
7. Use the in-room safe - it's easy to use and there for reason
8. Don't open the door for just anyone
9. Check fire exits and escape routes
10. Walk with confidence

Here are a few sites that also offer valuable tips:


I know we must all travel for business/pleasure - let's just be careful out there!

Did I miss some of yours? Please share your own safety tips with me.

- Christine

Thursday, May 6, 2010

There haven't been a lot of times when something really struck me as spot on thinking, the below excerpt from Geoff Livingstons blog ( is one of those times.

His thoughts on the personal, one-on-one relationships that are built through social media really resonates deeply with me. It's not so much the ding on corporate communication, because I think he believes (and so do I) that mass communication is important, it's the addition of the new communication, through social media, that holds NEW power.


“So what’s an organization to do? Stop content publishing, stop pushing your spiel. Start talking, practice the law of natural attraction, bring your network to you by becoming part of the larger ecosystem. It’s what Dell and LiveStrong and so many other successes have done.

When you let go of the postured brand control methods of mass media communications, and become a contributing part of ecosystems, things start to happen. You see organizations entrenched within larger conversations. People start paying attention, and a community starts to take hold.

When nonprofits and companies get over themselves and all of their contrived communications — like an awkward young adult finding themselves — they are able to focus on the big picture, and participate online in meaningful ways. They can add social to their larger communications mix as a real means to begin conversations with stakeholders. Whether that’s for fundraising/sales, community relations/customer service or volunteers/community loyalty, it really can happen on the social web.”

I believe that the need to connect is such an amazing thing - and I wonder how my professional life and network would be different today if social media had been around when I first started out.

I encourage the young and the old to get into the game now - there is so much to gain and if done right, with heart and sincerity, there is little to lose.

P.S. - Thanks Barbara for connecting me to this!

Volunteer of the week - May 6, 2010

Peter O’Brien
Marriott International
Association Account Executive

Peter has been a consistent and passionate presence on the Network for the Needy Committee for several years. In addition to sharing thoughtful, creative insight, and ideas on yearly committee projects; Peter participates in Hospitality Helping Hands (HHH) each year in our Annual Meeting host cities. To each HHH activity he brings a willingness to share his team leading skills - coaching and/or helping lead painting, landscaping, home re-building, etc.

Thanks for all you do Peter!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Volunteer of the Week - April 30, 2010

Craig Sanders
Senior Sales Manager
InterContinental New Orleans

Craig created a personal goal for himself to volunteer with the PCMA Network for the Needy Committee (NFTN) for three years. He is now serving his third year and has helped the committee move forward on Hospitality Helping Hands (HHH) initiatives in New Orleans, Dallas, and for 2011, Las Vegas. He was highly instrumental in sourcing the HHH projects in New Orleans as a member of the host city community service committee – dealing with an added challenge of helping choose projects that could accommodate the largest amount of volunteers EVER for the program. He is consistently generous with his time and passion and in 2010 is organizing a New Orleans group to participate as a city for Service in Sync (SIS).

Send a note to Craig and thank him for his dedication to PCMA's NFTN committee!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Recognizing Volunteers

Last week was volunteer appreciation week. And, it's good to see a week dedicated to thanking volunteers who give their time, talent and money year in and year out.

But it's hardly enough. A week? What about the other 51 weeks of the year that they work on behalf of our associations/causes/foundations, etc.?

This topic has been a nut I've been chewing on since I first learned of this special week.

In fact, I've suggested it as a topic for today's (4/27/10) #assnchat.

Here at PCMA we do a good job of recognizing our members and volunteers (below is what we currently do)...but I think there could be more throughout the year.

So I'm embarking on a challenge for the rest of the year - my own PCMA volunteer recognition through this blog. I'm taking suggestions for candidates to recognize - send yours in today!

PCMA's Volunteer Recognition:
  • We recognize a member each week in our ThisWeek@PCMA email newsletter.
  • In ChapterLeaders@PCMA, a monthly e-communication to our chapter leaders we highlight the good chapter work of one individual
  • Our website lists all volunteers
  • At our Annual Meeting volunteers are recognized formally from stage during our Celebrate PCMA luncheon

Do you agree with me that associations need to do more? And if so, what do you consider meaningful recognition? Is being a name on the list enough? IMHO - I don't think so...

Look for my first PCMA volunteer recognition post later this week...if you have nominees send them my way!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Green Jacket Moment

I golf. Not well and not often, but I've played my share of 18 holes over the years. I married into a golf family - therefore, I learned the game and sport that is golf.

To be honest, the best part for me is just being outside in the sun (as I do not golf in rain or on cloudy days!) for 4+ hours walking around on grass. The fact that I hit the ball straight, but not far, is often the cause of much conversation. I have a natural talent for hitting straight - woohoo!

So, I was watching the Masters Golf Tournament on Sunday (naturally!), and saw the Mickelson finish and the tender moments with his wife and children. *Break to commercial.* When they came back from the commercial they were in Butler Cabin, ready to announce and award him the coveted green jacket (that, let's be honest, nobody would really ever wear if it was just a plain old jacket without meaning).

Here's the part that made me take notice - the President of Augusta (the course where the Masters is played) got to make the announcement and award the jacket to the winner. (I checked out Augusta's website to find information on how someone becomes President of the club, but couldn't find anything...maybe I wasn't looking in the right spot - so take notice - if your website is so confusing you can't find your board members...but I digress).

So it got me thinking, this guy is President of this golf course/club and THIS moment is his coolest duty. How could it not be? All the planning for this event every year, with different presidents, it was this moment in time that, IMHO, is the most special and spectacular.

This is not much different than how associations run...we work all year planning for our "Masters" event (Annual Meeting, tradeshow, etc.).

BUT...what is the "Green Jacket" moment at your event? Is it the speech from the podium recapping their year, is it handing over the gavel?

Again, IMHO, those aren't "Green Jacket" moments - they are just moments...ticks off the list of things to get done at the event (yeah, I know - governance is important - I'm not arguing that it's not - it's just not *fireworks*).

What is the tradition of your association that could warrant this totally cool moment that gives your Chair/President, who is a very special volunteer leader, their true shining moment? The moment that they will take with them forever and leave that warm fuzzy feeling about the association in their heart forever.

My question and challenge is this - Define what your associations "Green Jacket" moment could be if you really thought about it.

Now, I need to go...I have a noon tee time! ;+)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Vacation in Paradise!

Hi everyone. I just returned to work today from a week of forgive this tangent - but I'm in the post-vacation glow! A quick review of our itinerary:

  • A few days in Phoenix with my inlaws to celebrate Easter

  • Recruited said inlaws to watch Leo

  • Next stop Sedona for some hiking and R&R

  • Quick side trip to the Grand Canyon (my first time)

WOW - this country is so beautiful and in so many unexpected ways. Who would have thought that rock formations and the color of rocks would be so inspiring? It's mind blowing to even think about how one small little river (the Colorado River) formed the entire Grand Canyon - WOW!

As you know, when you travel you get to see the good, the bad and the ugly of the travel and hospitality industry...the good news for me is that we only had GOOD experiences so I want to give a few shout outs to some exceptional service providers:

1. L’Auberge de Sedona - WOW! We had our own individual cabin with a fireplace, outdoor (yes, outdoor) shower, and a beautiful creek (Oak Creek) flowing at the back of the property. They had resident ducks camped out along the shore that were just plain cute. Our dining there was delicious and all the staff were so super friendly. It made me wonder why everyone doesn't move to Sedona to join in their friendliness 24/7.

2. Red Rocks Jeep Tour - you know what I'm talking about...the open air jeep tour of the local "scene". Our tour guide/driver - Calamity Jen was spectacular. She knew all there was to know about the Red Rocks of Sedona, gave great dining advice, was friendly and gave us a bumpy ride we'll never forget.

3. American Airlines - yes - American Airlines!!! Traveling with a toddler isn't always easy - even with a good traveler, like Leo is. They didn't hesitate to get me additional water or milk for Leo during the flight and never made me lift him off my lap (when he was sleeping) to make sure my seatbelt was fastened. I really dislike that part...YES, my seatbelt is fastened...NO I don't feel like I need to prove it to you. So, I was very happy that they didn't make me adjust Leo...which could have woken him up. Our luggage showed up, our stroller showed up, we arrived early in both destinations...WOW!

4. The Grand Canyon forest staff - These folks know what they are talking about, love what they do, and have the best "office" around. Two thumbs up for expert advice on trail conditions!

It was a great week away from the office and I'm happy to report on the excellent time we had.

Do you have a great vacation coming up? Where are you going? What are you doing?

Monday, March 15, 2010

Ring Buzzer for Customer Service

"Don't they understand that we have to take care of our members? They are why we have jobs!"

The concept is so simple - without members, associations would not exist. And for that matter, I would not have a job...but why is it so hard for some associations and businesses to get this basic function down right? Does anyone besides membership really care and nurture member relationships?
Are we educating and training new employees on what are the basics of member care?
Does every department "get it" and are they participating in ongoing member care initiatives?
These are just a few questions to ask yourself, or your management team. And then put actions or (SOPs) in place so there leaves little room for interpretation of what's expected.
Here are some examples:
1. All member emails answered within 2 hours of receipt
2. All member calls returned withinin one hour
3. Receipts issued automatically after payment (for anything) is completed
4. Website issues addressed and cleared up within, at the very least, one business day
5. Difficult situations handled immediately and by appropriate staff
These are just some of the standard practices that associations follow - what one's work for you? Please share them today!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

You had me at online...

Have you ever found yourself realizing something that should have dawned on you before, but it never did?

That happened to me today as I was walking through the halls of the office and it was shockingly simple...but it never dawned on me before.

I realized that I love online communities and I have for more than 10 years. You say, "Come on Christine - don't talk crazy talk!" That's impossible there were no online communities 10 years ago!

But it's true!

I've been participating in online communities starting in 1999 when I was planning my wedding. I found that Martha Stewart had an online discussion board where brides of all types could gather and discuss all the intimate, nit picky aspects of wedding planning. We could complain to each other about prices of flowers, dress, invitations, whatever. But there was one thing in common - we all were excited about our wedding.

I have a fair amount of self awareness and I realized quite early on that not many people cared about my wedding as much as I did and REALLY did NOT want to hear it. My outlet for my excitement was Martha Stewart's online discussion board. If fact, I just visited it today and it's still alive and well (

It was a little piece of heaven for me - my secret outlet for wedding obsession with a lot of other gals who were equally wedding obsessed (not bridezilla's as today - but just girls who were super excited).

By the time I was expecting Leo I was already on Facebook and LinkedIn (not on Twitter though) - and I as I searched the web for a site that could give me the same sense of community I had when I planned my wedding 8 years before, I ended up at the What to Expect website.

What I loved about this site was that I was not only in a large community of pregnant women, but I was in a subset of women who were all due in the same month as me. I mostly lurked on this site because it often got very "interesting" - but I enjoyed having a place to learn and hear from others who had similar questions/issues/concerns.

So, here I am, participating on Twitter and writing a blog and connecting on Facebook and LinkedIn and it has connected me with a lot of very interesting people, from all walks of life, all different career paths - but we all have one thing in common - we are passionate about the meetings industry and association management.

History is repeating itself my friends - and I'm glad I have you to hang out with!


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Lessons Learned from a Pooch Hotel?!

*Full disclosure right now – my dog, Hippo, is spoiled. Enough said…please continue reading.

As a dog owner who travels a bit for work and pleasure, the decision on where to board your pet while away is a big one. For me, and Hippo, it has a lot to do with the environment the dog will be in while I’m away – how much play time is there with other dogs, will they give medicine each day, will they bathe the dog before I get home – that kind of thing.

So if you’re evaluating boarding facilities – all of them have the basics – a cage for sleeping, a play area for group play and some sort of grooming facility. It’s the ones that go above and beyond that stand out.

It struck me a couple weeks ago when I had to drop Hippo off for a three night stay at Pooch Hotel (in Chicago – that there are quite a few similarities between the dog hotel and the hotel we stayed in – save for a few.

Pooch Hotel
The online boarding reservation system is a breeze and everything is handled at one time, on one screen – you can make the boarding reservation, you pick size of cage, treats or no treats at bedtime, spa (aka grooming) appt, individual walks to a park, etc.

Human Hotel
At a human hotel once you complete the online reservation, then you have to go back online or call the concierge to make dinner reservations, spa appts., court time/tee-times, etc.

Pooch Hotel
Upon arrival – all the desk staff welcomed Hippo by name without asking me who it was…Their secret? I’m not sure, but I think they take pictures of the dogs and keep them with the dog’s file.

Human Hotel
Travelers have the opportunity to provide profile information about their preferences – but are they taking advantage of it? I know I have a profile at Wyndham and when I stay there I get extra pillows and Diet Coke – I love it.

I encourage, not just the hotel world, but everyone including association professionals to capture and then use the information they have on guests/members to their advantage.

Clearly, Pooch Hotel is exceeding my expectations, and I will return. So, I ask, what are you doing to stand out and exceed your client/customer/guests expectations?

Are you a hotel? What do you provide your guests to keep them coming back?

Are you an association? How do you make your members feel like #1 all the time?

Are you a service provider? What do you do to make your clients feel cared for?

Share your thoughts – I look forward to them!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Don't Forget the Basics - Breathing

Tomorrow I have the privilege of taking my entire PCMA membership team off-site for an entire day of planning. I say privledge because when was the last time you just detached yourself from your computer/phone and thought about stuff, planned instead of reacted?

If you had a year similar to people I know, you were asked to do more, with less...nose to the grindstone with barely enough time to come up for air. For a lot of us that strategy worked last year to a large extent, but that is no way to consistently operate a business/department. It just doesn't work - it will burn out your team members (and you).

Tomorrow is the time for my team to take a deep cleansing breath of fresh air!

I'm so curious to know what you are doing to plan for the year - knowing we need to keep our focus strong, but also be forward looking/thinking. Please share your thoughts with me so we can learn from each other.


Monday, February 15, 2010

Happiness Project

My new favorite website/blog of the day (thanks to a Tweet by @JeffHurt) -

Gretchen Rubin (@gretchenrubin) has written a book, Happiness Project, which I have not read, but I can tell you that if it's on Kindle, it will be downloaded on my commute home.

Have you read this book/blog? If so, what one great idea have you come up with that brings you more happiness in your day-to-day world?

Here is a sample from today - Ten Reasons Why Using Twitter Will Boost Your Happiness


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Two Cool Tools

Two new tools I just learned about. Have you used them? Did you like one over the other?

Basically, both tools allow you to record your desktop in a video format. Jing appears to be free for up to a 5 min. video. Camtasia has a free trial.

For more ideas on screencasters - check out this blog by Betsy Weber:


I Heart Twitter!

I love Twitter. Here are the reasons I love it, add yours!

1. It helps me stay connected to members
2. I get to meet new and interesting people who "live" in the association space
3. I get to meet new and interesting people who "live" in the social media space
4. I'm learning how to communicate in 140 or less
5. You can find out cool stuff about interesting people
6. You can find new blogs to read
7. You can keep an eye on the trending topics to stay on top of world issues (even if it's just the latest Lady Gaga gossip)

My favorite hashtags:
1. #pcma (of course!)
2. #eventprofs
3. #assnchat
4. #tradeshows
5. #ec10

My newest follow discovery that I love (at least this today/week): @MemberClicks

What are your favorites?


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Shoes

So, I was a skeptic. I admit it freely. Everyone told me about these clogs made by Dansko and how my feet and back would NOT hurt after wearing these same shoes for the entire conference.

I didn't believe them. BUT, I bought them because really what's the harm, right?!

It's true - they were the most amazing shoes. My feet didn't hurt once and my back lasted the entire event. It only started hurting after I made the unwise decision to wear my computer bag for 4 hours!

So, if you are in need of tried and true (and tested) shoes for your next event, and you don't mind a slightly ugly shoe to hide under your slacks - try the Dansko clog.

Do you have other shoes you like for events? If so, please share!!!