Meetings on the Rebound

Managing events in the aftermath of the pandemic means more complexity – and more opportunity
The pandemic forced every meeting to get at least smaller – but hardly simpler. Capacity limits, F&B minimums, streaming in and out – the question for planners and travel buyers is how to maintain protocols, juggle facilities and still deliver an effective meeting experience, both remotely and in-person. One thing is for sure – it’s not business as it once was.

Event planners, meeting organizers, tech experts and others in the meetings management arena have been remarkably successfully in their “pivot” during 2020 and 2021. To take meetings into the virtual stratosphere without any prior “training,” all in the name of business continuity, was no small feat. And for many companies, despite the hardships, business still blossomed.

However, as with everything in life, it came with a cost. Virtual meeting technology wasn’t cheap. Planning staff was cut. Working from home had its ups and downs. In fact, many went through something of a crisis.

According to JT Long, editorial director at California-based Smart Meetings, a meetings industry media company, “Many spent the pandemic pause doing some existential thinking about what they actually deliver, learning new digital content delivery tricks and dreaming about how wonderful it will feel to be around people again. And things may look a little different when we return to the ballroom. From sanitation theater and sanctuary seating to ‘simulive’ learning, meeting professionals who earnestly embrace the digital producer role and take their cues from Superbowl and Academy Award broadcasts will undoubtedly succeed in a hybrid future.

Categories: Special ReportMeetings & SMM

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