In 2009, in the middle of the worst economic crisis, we came up with the idea of Conventa Trade Show. The responses from colleagues and the media were unified. You are brave, taking on a project like this and stepping into the unknown. Conventa was born in a crisis. Conventa also overcame a crisis. We are used to crisis management and change is something the Conventa team takes as a given. This attitude allowed Conventa to grow, but a change in the form of a global virus outbreak is something we never could have predicted.
We try to comfort ourselves by saying something good always seems to come from something bad. Everything happens for a reason. Maybe this outbreak is a message to the meetings industry and maybe we should start organising events differently. After all, the meetings industry was just about to “overheat” with all the symptoms that we consciously ignored.
I’ve heard people say that we can only win by sticking together. I completely agree. It might seem impossible right now, but this crisis is bound to bring some progress and positive change.
We have more time to think thoroughly about our industry, more time for our families. Life suddenly got EASY. Instead of exotic postcards, we will have to look around our doorstep and appreciate the little things in life. I am a firm believer in regional trade shows and events that aren’t as glamorous. The power of these events will show in the future and that is also the vision of Conventa.
Conventa brings us fulfilment. Motivation was never an issue and this situation gave us additional energy and vigour to get back to work.
There’s a lot of questions floating around in these “corona times”. I just wish that our sincere excitement, curiosity and the joy of attending events doesn’t fade away. Conventa will continue to be built on respect and solidarity, the cornerstones of the project and two words that we too often neglected.
Once every year, we all come together in Ljubljana. I think of it as an annual holiday of the regional meetings industry and we will make sure it stays that way.
Stay safe, compassionate and positive!