As the year ends, we reflect on a period we will remember forever. 2021 brought us extreme highs and lows, constant change, an influx in business, fear of shut down, the joy of reopening and many other journeys. In this blog, we take a look at the top 5 things this year has taught us, event planners, and share them with you… to laugh… or cry… cause we know you get it too! Therefore, we give you the top 5 things events planners learned in 2021, in ‘countdown’ order…
5. How to design, plan and execute an event in 2.5 days
Okay, so maybe not two and a half days, but definitely in a time frame that is beyond the appropriate amount of time an event should ever be planned. However, this is just the new way of events. Clients are waiting until the last minute to plan anything based on all the money they were out with their nonrefundable 2019 contracts. The good thing about this new planning format is that it has jump-started our brains to get out of sloth mode and into cheetah mode… but like a cheetah on steroids… with spots made out of glitter… and the glitter is scented… and we have wings. It has created a new beast, and we are stronger for it.
4. It’s okay to turn the camera off
In 2020, when video calls became a thing, it was fun… ish. Picking backgrounds, judging your co-worker’s home décor, finding your best angles, showing up, etc. “Please turn your camera on” has quickly changed to a silent, collective “Pleeeeease turn your camera off.” Two years into a pandemic, we’re all looking a little less cute, a little less enthusiastic, and have lost the desire to see anyone’s face. We are comfortable being comfortable and enjoy the privacy of taking a call in whatever and wherever we feel like. Now, instead of wondering why on earth Deb has her camera turned off (jump to worse case appearance scenarios), we are wondering why the hell Bob has his camera on… weirdo. Dare we say that 2022 brings back the conf call line???
3. How to do 95% of your business in Q4
I don’t know one event planner who wouldn’t say their Q4 was probably the busiest they have seen in years. Suddenly it was fall and all the ‘postponed until fall 2021’ hit, and oh did it hit! We basically had to sprint a marathon full speed while people chucked balls at our faces (insert ‘Clueless’ line). Not to mention, we are still in a labor shortage, vendor item shortage, floral shortage and overall ‘you need it, we’re short…age.’ But, on-brand for event planners, we found solutions and made sh** happen! And, better yet, the influx in business made us forget all about the early quarters of baking bread.
2. How truly offensive the word ‘virtual’ is
Live events are back, and back with a vengeance! We all feel alive again… skipping through our events like 2020 never happened. However, it’s not fully over (meant to be read in ‘whisper’). I avoid the news at all costs. Avoidance makes it not real. Unfortunately/ fortunately, our clients don’t have the same mentality. They watch 6 different time slots of 7 different networks and check google, yahoo & bing to get all the scariest data. Slowly but surely, the word ‘virtual’ is creeping back into our meetings and RFPs. AHHHHHHHH. I twitch every time I hear it. “She doesn’t even go here (‘Mean Girls’ reference)!” But, sadly, she does… and I get it… she needs to be here for safety right… but as a last, last, last resort. Ugh… virtual (dry heave).
1. WE ARE RESILIENT!
I mean… truly. Our industry, like several others, was directly affected by this pandemic. We learned how to survive, how to shift, how to hope and how to not give up. If the saying is true, ‘what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger,’ then we are all superheroes at this point. And, even though 2022 is looking questionable (quietly panicking inside), we know we will get through it… but fingers crossed 2022 is beyond successful for everyone. Cheers and Happy New Year.