For event professionals I think the future is bright. Very bright.

Covid-19 came along and devastated the in-person events sector and that impact is still being felt today. But now, things are changing. Whether you love in-person events, virtual events or hybrid events it doesn’t matter. There are opportunities in all.

Positive Signs

Even with the in-person events sector that has been on the floor, there are positive signs of change coming. This is due in large part to the superb work and collaborative efforts of people from all corners of the globe. Scientists, medical staff, government officials and more have all played a role.
Vaccines to help reduce the impact of the virus have been developed and many people have now been vaccinated. This has helped ease the tension and nervousness that was felt by many. There is still some way to go, and things will never go back to exactly how they were before. But for me, that is a good thing. Why seek normality?

The point is that the pandemic highlighted issues we may not want to look at directly, it shines a light on everything, both good and bad. It provides an opportunity for change. It provides a chance for people to develop new thinking and a new way of living.

Not the Only Game in Town

And whilst virtual events have been the only game in town during lockdown, what we have seen has been an increase in their production values. We have moved swiftly from accepting that it is ‘just a virtual event’ to now being aware that virtual events are enabling the economy and society to move forward.
What’s next is the combination of in-person delegates and virtual delegates at hybrid events. Some people are super keen to get out and start meeting people again. But other people are more cautious and understand the benefits of virtual.

However, the crucial thing is that all these event types offer choice for delegates and choice for clients. And the choice is greater than ever before.
Therefore whatever you specialise in as an event professional there are opportunities around and they are set to keep coming.

I believe that event professionals are hungry to make things work. For some there has been a huge pent-up frustration that they couldn’t get out and about. But in that time when they couldn’t, they didn’t wait for answers, they started developing plans and ideas to emerge uber-relevant for when the pandemic is over. Make no mistake, they know that competition will be tougher than ever. They also know they will have to convince organisations that it is safe for their staff to come to in-person events. They have been working out how to get ahead.

Custodians of the Planet

For other event professionals delivering virtual events, well they have been run off their feet. And that is set to continue. Virtual events are no longer seen as placeholder events. Virtual events are important in their own right. They absolutely break down the issues of people being able to afford to take time to travel to an event or find the money to stay away from home. In addition, they help with the challenge of being custodians of the planet.
And if you are an event professional that wants to take on the challenge of directing a hybrid event then the future is also looking good for you.

Embrace the Change

Out of the pandemic, change is happening. Event professionals are responding to it positively and that is why I think it doesn’t matter what you are doing right now, there is a very bright future ahead if you want to embrace the change.

Find Out More

This post was written as part of the build-up to MPI’s European Meetings and Events Conference (EMEC) 2021. If you would like to book tickets for EMEC, click this link and enter your details. See you there!