Duty of care has arguably never been more important in meetings and events. As we return to in-person meetings, it's important that our employees, clients and their attendees feel as safe and prepared as possible to participate.
Tips for Safe In-Person Events
For hybrid events, it's important to keep virtual employees engaged, but what about once we are ready for full in-person gatherings? What are some of the new ways to look at the "old" way of doing things that can be updated to fit current needs?
Here are four main principles to keep in mind when building your program to mitigate risk for everyone while on-site.
Clearly communicate how to handle someone on-site not feeling well.
A strong communications plan drives messaging and connects your audience to the experience from the first point of contact. Now more than ever, it's crucial to develop materials that are clear in conveying new protocols and expectations for an in-person event, including how to handle attendees or staff who may not feel well once the program is under way. Make sure people know who to talk to if they aren't feeling well, when to speak up, and ensure the safety of all with proper protocols once someone isn't feeling 100%.
Practice safe social spacing.
Likely, we're all familiar with new setups in public spaces that allow for proper distancing of individuals or groups. Make sure to have all areas clearly labeled and signs directing people to the flow of traffic to avoid congestion. Everyone will be excited to be sharing space again and the energy will be welcomed back, but we'll all need to work to maintain proper social distancing as we navigate back to in-person.
Use personal protective equipment when needed.
The reality is that even as many of us are being vaccinated, it won't be the same for everyone at the same time, and a simple but effective way to mitigate spread of disease is by using adequate personal protective equipment (masks, gloves, etc.). While it's not ideal to have half your face covered, why not take this opportunity to give a personalized touch in your attendee's welcome bags by providing event branded PPE? Think of creative ways to make PPE part of the conversation in this new way of meeting that can add to the experience and not detract from it.
Practice good hygiene, including handwashing and using hand sanitizer.
This one seems like a no-brainer, but it can't be overstated: hand washing is an excellent way to mitigate the spread of viruses. Having access to soap and water is the best form of practicing good hygiene, but supplementing with alcohol-based hand sanitizer when there isn't a sink available will give attendees confidence and provide another opportunity to make a branding statement. Make sure to distribute hand sanitizers to attendees and provide adequate areas around the venue to disinfect, providing peace of mind and proactive solutions.
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