How Do Businesses Utilise Their Event Budgets Over The Next 12 Months?

Nick Gold 8 March 2021

It has always been the adage that time brings a degree of certainty to any situation as events unfold and consequences and conclusions reveal themselves. As we approach the new financial year and the pandemic continues to impact our work and life in so many aspects, the one certainty we know in these times is that the need to be adaptive and roll with the change is critical to surviving and leading to circumstances which (we can whisper) we are comfortable with.

Most businesses and sectors have switched to a tactical focus over the last year, especially in the events sector as the lack of clarity looking towards the future and the fear of the immediate impact has meant a head down reactionary approach. But this is not sustainable. A business and its employees cannot operate in survival mode for a sustained period. As any successful entrepreneur can talk about, one of the keys to success is to make bold decisions when common sense or management theory would dictate the data or precedent indicates a wait and see approach.

For the events industry and those who organise internal event programmes and meetings for their business, we now at a time where the roadmap has been laid out by the politicians for a return ‘to live’. However, a lack of confidence due to previous experiences and a continued emphasis voiced by politicians around the flexible nature of the dates specified has impacted the sense of security the roadmap is meant to bring.

We crave certainty and security during turbulent times but as we look around both of these are lacking for us as individuals and as businesses. But we need, as we head into the new financial year, to go forward with optimism. Optimism not necessarily related to timescales or date for a return to live, but confident in the fact our knowledge and experience have developed for the better.

The virtual environment is no longer something new. We understand it benefits, its potential but also its pitfalls and its restrictions. We understand the uncertainty, the cost implications, and the possible social impact of a physical event. We are also aware, in these times more than ever before, how much we long for that social physical interaction and how we are all craving the chance to enjoy company and occasions like never before.

Businesses need to start looking forward and thinking strategically. As we look to plan and forecast, to create and innovate, we know decisions need to be made, budgets need to be agreed and ideas need to be formulated. the growth of the business will come from making decisions and not being fearful of the possible consequences due to the lifecycle of the pandemic or the ambivalent nature of the politicians as they react to circumstances.

The critical element is that we should have confidence in our ability to adapt whether that be moving from a physical event to virtual due to restrictions or creating a last minute ‘pop up’ which was planned virtually but could be changed to embrace the lifting of restrictions. We can have confidence that society is embracing the last minuteness of the situation and yes, we would prefer it wasn’t this way, but in an industry where creativity is the normal, we should be embracing the uncertainty secure in our knowledge that we will create and deliver.

We know that companies and individuals want experiences; they want to learn, they want to bond, they want to be inspired and they want to think differently and strive to be better. Now is the time to be bold, to look forward. We will always find ways to adapt and succeed even when all paths appear bleak before us.

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