Blog FPO

Gardian of the Month: Erin Rogers

Our Gardian of the Month is Erin Rogers, Membership and Operations Coordinator for the Rocky Mountain Section of American Water Works Association (RMSAWWA).

Learn: What's your favorite part about learning something new? 

Actually, everything!  I have always loved learning – whether it is through reading, watching, conversation or doing. 

Network: How might you help a wallflower, who's not comfortable networking at a professional event loosen up?

Since I tend to be a wallflower myself, I know how tricky it can be.  My main strategy (after grabbing a glass of wine!) is to have some questions in mind to ask people as I meet them.  I don’t necessarily think well on the fly, so prepping some general questions ahead of time is best for me.

Transfer: Tell us about an experience in which you learning something new and then applied it to your personal or professional life.

I love to learn new technologies. I’m specifically interested in anything can save time and make me more efficient. Over the past year, I’ve been learning a few more advanced features of Excel (luckily for me, I have a live-in tutor, my husband!). These lessons have been invaluable to my job – particularly when it comes to processing attendance at our conferences and events in order to issue professional credits. Since just about everything has been virtual, I have had to utilize and combine a variety of downloaded reports to compile the training certificates.  Without Excel functionality, these tasks would have taken so much longer.  Also, I learn best by repetition, so the fact that I’m using what I’ve learned on a regular basis ensures that what I’ve learned will stay with me.

Please share with us a resource and why you can’t live without it.

I love Evernote. I’ve been using it for many years and have all kinds of information stored there.  I can access it anywhere I am with my phone or computer, which makes it super useful. It’s hard to even summarize the information I have saved, because it’s so much and so varied. I keep work/personal task lists, my grocery list, meal plans, budget/bill info, important information (such as my car license plate or printer cartridge number – which I can never remember), travel information (handy to keep all in one place), notes from meetings, car maintenance info, wines I like, and so forth.  One of the most used notes I have is a packing list template.  I have a checklist with everything I could possibly need for any kind of trip.  When I have a trip coming up, I make a copy and modify it for what I’m doing - then refer to it as I’m packing.  It’s usually the last thing I check before I leave.  It’s saved me from missing things so many times!

Just for Fun: If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be and why?

Pick Your Battles and Live a Happier Life!  One of the most important things I learned in my life is to always ask myself….in the big picture, is this worth getting upset, angry, or worried about?  Most things really are not. I’ve learned to let so many things go and just live a calmer, happier life with very little drama. Some people seem to attract drama, negativity and stress.  I make it a choice to not spend a lot of my time with these people.  Choose wisely who you surround yourself with and your life will be more enjoyable.

In Event Planning…We’re All on the Same Team

In basketball, you win as a team, and you lose as a team. It doesn’t matter if you personally play your best game, if you aren’t supporting each other and working together as a team, you won’t be successful. This is true of events too! 

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Breaking Down the Many Faces of Meeting Software (in VR)

Pandemic accelerated the adoption of virtual tools for business communication. Now we live in a remote-first society that demands better ways of connecting online. Here we explore what Virtual Reality is, and the many forms that it comes in to help us connect with others remotely.

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Gardian of the Month: Ahliba Toffa

Ahliba Toffa is our Gardian of the Month! Find out her favorite thing about learning something new, her go-to networking tip, the resource she can't live without and a little-known fact about her!

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By: Shannon Lockwood | Sep, 9 2022

Aligning Your Venue Space, Content, and Experience Goals

You’ve just begun digging into the planning process for your organization’s next event. The venue contract was signed months (or even years!) ago, and you’re beginning to align the existing components of your event within the contracted space grid. And suddenly, a colleague comes in with their next BIG IDEA… and “the plan” goes out the window…

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By: Krista Rowe | Sep, 2 2022

How the Questions We Ask Effect Our Work

Often as facilitators we create questions to get to a particular outcome, to the extent that it guides the conversation in a narrow direction. Being clear about our own agenda for a question - the ways in which all questions are loaded and are directly connected to our own worldview – is super important.

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Forces Impacting Our Success: MSAE Members Complete PESTLE Analysis

During the Michigan Society of Association Executives, members and attendees had the opportunity to participate in a facilitated exercise to identify and explore current forces at play that are affecting them and their organizations. Following is an overview of those sessions led by Event Garde team members, along with the strategic insights and actionable business intelligence association leaders can apply to their work immediately.

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