Updated: Jul 14, 2020
You’ve heard it hundreds of times over the last few months. “We are living in unprecedented times.” These days, that phrase has become almost frustratingly cliché, but it still rings true. Around the world, companies are doing their best to quickly pivot to cut losses and meet demands as consumers stay home and businesses temporarily close their doors. Changes that ordinarily would take months to slug through bureaucratic approval processes now take just days, if not hours, to get pushed through. The time is right to be flexible, adaptive, and open to new ideas.
The event industry is among the hardest hit as the world has stayed home in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. It goes without saying that many event professionals are currently without jobs, and exhibit houses and live event agencies are shifting focus in order to survive. It is an extremely difficult time, but despite the hardships, we’ve seen incredible examples of resilience and strong community efforts within this hardy industry. Competitors and partners alike are banding together to collectively forge a path to embrace the “new normal” and advance the industry for the greater good.
In May, I attended a virtual event for event professionals, like myself, called the Virtual Event on Virtual Events hosted by Event Marketer. Unfortunately, the event did not exactly go off without a hitch. To sum it up, there were technical issues. While having trouble accessing one of the sessions, I meandered over to the chat rooms to check if others were having similar issues. They were. And, in typical internet-troll fashion, there were a number of attendees berating the organizers for the bugs in the system. While the glitches were inconvenient, it was nothing to lose your cool over.
I give Event Marketer a standing round of applause for being a leader and spending valuable resources to bring industry professionals together to engage with one another and learn. At zero cost to attendees, nonetheless.
Our world of events is currently in an experimental phase and, in order to push forward, it’s critical to celebrate the little wins and embrace learning experiences when we miss the mark. We need leaders like Event Marketer to help pave the way and we should be encouraging experimentation and learning. Without the collective support of our event industry community, , we’re at risk of losing more than we already have.
As a customer-focused industry, we must be ahead of the game, anticipating our clients’ needs before they even realize what those needs are. This means agile evolution of internal skills, leaning into partnerships to fill in the gaps, and looking to the event community as a whole for guidance and big-picture shots at what the future could hold. Only then will we grow stronger and serve our clients better than ever.
Senior Account Manager