From travel restrictions to the growth of working from home and wild swings in equity and commodity markets, the last year has changed our region, says Tim Cordon, Area Senior Vice President, Middle East & Africa, Radisson Hotel Group.
Following the initial novelty – for those of us able to exercise this privilege – of working from home came a sense of fatigue. Studies show that, whilst most appreciate the flexibility that comes with a hybrid WFH arrangement, this cannot be the way of working, but should rather sit alongside in-person meetings and events where appropriate. A recent McKinsey survey suggests that 90% of organisations aim to incorporate a combination of remote and at-desk functionality in the immediate post-COVID era. But, despite many of us coming to terms with a hybrid
way of working, executing this is not without
In recent months, we have seen the accelerated adoption of technology within businesses. Whilst I believe there will always be a need for physical meetings and interactions, business meetings nowadays have moved to a more hybrid set-up, with smaller teams getting together in one location and connecting with others via videoconference. But the question is, how can we make these meetings as comfortable and collaborative as they were previously in order to ensure the success and longevity of our businesses. According to the Post COVID-19 Event Outlook Report, an overwhelming 93% of organisers plan to invest in virtual events moving forward. Looking at numbers, it’s not unusual for virtual events to capture 6x – 8x the number of registrations compared to the equivalent event. Additionally, both attendees and planners were pleasantly surprised by attendance rates and engagement levels in virtual events. With that in mind, many believe that virtual events are likely to stay, as they create a powerful way to build engagement with audiences everywhere. Whilst physical events will come back in the future, they probably won’t supplant virtual events; rather they’ll exist alongside them.