Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

February 11 2015

PCMA SE Member Spotlight

Chris Colbert
Q&A with Karyl Hanisch, Sr. Sales Manager
Battle House Renaissance Mobile Hotel & Spa
Mobile, AL

How many years have you been in the hospitality industry?
I was part of the Opening Team at the Mobile Convention Center in 1993. Wow, that’s been 21 years!
How long have you been a PCMA member?
I attended several PCMA SE Chapter President’s Balls in Atlanta, and then became a member in 2009, when I attended the PCMA Convening Leaders Conference in New Orleans. I was privileged to serve on the PCMA-SE Board from 2010 to 2012.
What is your current job title and name of your organization?
Senior Sales Manager -- Renaissance Hotels of Mobile. I represent the Battle House Renaissance Mobile Hotel & Spa and the Renaissance Mobile Riverview Plaza Hotels, both just one block apart in downtown Mobile, Alabama.
Do you prefer sunrises or sunsets and where is the best of either?
I love the glorious orange, pinks, and purples of a Sunset over Mobile Bay. That iconic Mobile Bay view is locked in my memory banks and I always feel I am home as soon as I see it.
What's the most unexpected thing you've learned during your membership in PCMA? Don’t think your opinion as a member isn’t valued. I had a comment regarding my first registration experience at PCMA Convening Leaders in New Orleans. Deborah Sexton personally called me to discuss and resolve. I was shocked that the head of PCMA would take the time to contact me, but also that they made a change based on my comments. I am impressed with how personal the relationship is with the members, and it flows from the top down.
If you could recommend one book, what would it be and why? (this can be a book to read just for fun or for personal/career benefit)

This is a hard one, as I love to read and used to bring home as many books as I could carry from our Book Mobile. Yes, I was a reading nerd! I enjoy reading many of our local Mobile authors such as Rick Bragg, Winston Groom & Roy Hoffman and for fun reading at the beach you can’t beat Mary Kay Andrews.
Social Media is the buzz-word in our world today; what Social Media tool has worked best for you and your organization in connecting with clients?
Facebook is a great way to stay in touch with so many people. We get so busy, it’s hard to stay in touch as often as we want. Social Media allows us to reach a vast group of contacts at the same time…..It’s fun to celebrate the small everyday things of life, which keeps us close and deepens our relationships.
If you could trade places with any other person for a week, famous or not, living or dead, real or fictional, with whom would it be?
Audrey Hepburn - her style is iconic…who wouldn’t want to be her?!
Someone you have met at a PCMA-SE Chapter meeting is just beginning a career in the hospitality/meetings industry; what thoughts could you share that might have been helpful for you to know at some point in your career? 
You have made a great choice in being a part of PCMA. Get active on a Chapter level and you will always receive more than you give. PCMA is on the cutting edge of our industry – be sure to take advantage of all that this affords.