Insights

How the Meetings & Events Industry Can Create Positive Impact

In our 2021 Global Trends Report, we discuss four trending themes in the meetings and events industry that continue to evolve over time. These topics are significant because they impact us as individuals, our organizations and our world.

In 2020, it became apparent that innovation in these areas is crucial for progress and for surviving in a post-pandemic world. Continue reading to understand the importance of well-being, sustainability, diversity and inclusion, and supporting local. Plus, our team members from around the world provide insight on how we're working to contribute to these trends.

Man and woman elbow bumping hello | Global agency, BCD Meetings & Events

Industry Trends For the Greater Good

Well-being

We know meetings and events is one of the most stressful industries, even during the good times. Add in the stressors of this year and it can feel overwhelming. Our mental and physical health has suffered, but together we can make way for moving forward.

Hear from us: Mindy Hanzlik, Senior Solution Designer

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BCD M&E has really shown their commitment to their employees by being honest about the challenges we face, and trying to find ways we can proactively support each other and ourselves as we weather this. We’ve built an internal culture on our team of keeping personal connections with heartfelt compliments and messages that we send in our Teams chat on the regular.

Every Friday we pause to celebrate a successful week amidst the crazy deadlines and intricate virtual puzzles we’re solving. Sometimes it’s a goofy-GIF competition, sometimes it’s a happy hour. But it reminds us that we’re a team and we’re getting through this together. And our leadership has been extra focused on making sure we take time for ourselves…if our workload allows, they encourage us to walk away from our desks for an afternoon off, or to sleep in and have a chill morning before we log on to face the day. And they ALWAYS discourage us from working on the weekend so we get a real break from the pressure This flexibility and support means a lot, and it helps us all establish work life balance in a space where the lines are often blurry.

Sustainability

The amount of change that needs to happen to combat global warming can seem daunting and out of our hands. Aside from policy, however, there are steps that we as individuals and within meetings and events can continue to take to create sustainable practices and mindfulness around the planning process. 

Hear from us: Nicole Lim, HR Generalist

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In partnership with Smile! Singapore (a self-initiated charity drive) and Krsna's Free Meals (a soup kitchen in Singapore run by like-minded volunteers who are compassionate and determined to serve those in need), BCDM&E Singapore launched Smile! BCD M&E Singapore Soup Kitchen project in July 2020.

Through this initiative, we aim to help people in the Little India area who have lost their jobs and welfare due to the COVID-19 pandemic by distributing home cook style hot lunches and care packs to them. Since its inception, BCD M&E Singapore has raised more than SGD 1,750 and distributed more than 1,100 hot lunches and care packs during Smile! BCD M&E Singapore Soup Kitchen volunteer sessions in August and November.

 

Members of the BCD Meetings & Events Singapore team serving food for Smile! Singapore initiative | Global agency, BCD Meetings & Events

 

These volunteer sessions gave us precious opportunity to meet each other when we spent most part of this year working from home. Over the 2 sessions, the team quickly bond as we come together to do good, giving back to the society, and share this valuable experience. We hope this will continue and great to have management’s endorsement on this programme.  

 

Diversity & Inclusion

There is no question that D&I is a complex and nuanced topic which can be applied in many different ways within an organization to make the workplace a positive environment with opportunities for all. The hardships of 2020 brought renewed light and focus on this topic and we see the industry actively engaging in ways to improve.

Hear from us: Cameron Pettigrew, Content Specialist

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Our approach to making diversity and inclusion a priority at BCD M&E began with inquiry, education, and active listening.

As a global organization, we developed five regional councils composed of a diverse group of employees to help spearhead and facilitate organizational change around diversity & inclusion work. These councils collaborate with senior leadership to build out the framework for our D&I initiatives in addition to serving as sounding boards to facilitate discussion and employee education.

Some of these initiatives include becoming educated on common D&I topics and challenges, facilitating conversations around those topics with other internal teams and employees, finalizing D&I goals and milestones for the coming year, and developing messaging and resources to educate and inform the broader BCD M&E employee base about D&I work and opportunities for engagement.

Although this is just the start to diversity and inclusion work at BCD M&E, the councils, leadership, and global employee base are all poised for growth and eager to see continued progress within this area of our business.

Support Local

The COVID-19 pandemic has crushed local economies and there is a long road ahead to recovery. Supporting local businesses is one small way to impact a local economy in a big way. While we work our way back to long haul flights and far off destinations, we can take the process day by day by booking local.

Hear from us: Helen Carmichael, Account Director

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During this year we have been doing our best to show how well prepared our suppliers are for the return to live, it is super important that we lead from the front and get out there an visit new venues and hotels.

I made a masked visit to the stunning new Locke Living Hotel in Bermondsey central London I have to say it was very well equipped to move back into the live world. We supported them by promoting them on social media channels and by circulating the details about the venue around to my colleagues and clients, here at BCD Meetings & Events we have always had great relationships with our suppliers but it is times like this where we need to stand hand in hand with them and all help each other through to the other side.

Outdoor seating area at the Locke Living Hotel in Bermondsey central London | Global agency, BCD Meetings & Events

Even during times of full lockdown when we were not allowed to leave the house many of us join virtual show rounds and up dates from venues so that we can pass this invaluable information on to our clients. It is key to us moving on from this pandemic to keep these relationships going and keep the lines of communication open for the health of our clients our businesses and the suppliers.

 

To read our full insights on how organizations are moving forward and what's trending in the industry, download our 2021 Trends Report.

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