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Interview with Amanda Segar from BlueJeans Events on the future of the meetings industry, how their agency has adapted to the “new normal”, and why hybrid events are here to stay.

“technology will be used to augment and improve experiences, not replace them”

Q: What do you desire the most at the moment?

For in-person events to resume even as a hybrid model. Virtual events are not providing the same value as face to face.

Q: Why do you love organising events?

It is like anticipation for a big party. You have the opportunity to get creative and share thoughts, best practices, and make emotional lasting connections with peers and new people. The planning part of it is structured yet always exciting as you plan for the unknown.

Q: Can you present the tool or app you use the most during the corona crisis?

BlueJeans Events to help run our virtual events and webinars.

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Photo Credit: BlueJeans Events

Q: How would you explain to a client why organising events is essential?

Because there are so many opportunities to get creative with experiential activities and surprises, it is important to have a strong and trusted framework in place. It ensures basic, expected elements are taken care of with low maintenance, allowing the team to focus energy and brainpower on new, exciting elements.

Q: Is it easier to organise digital or live events?

They are probably about the same from a sponsor perspective. Hosted live events are not necessarily harder but do take more time to plan. There are fewer unknowns with live events, however, which may ultimately make them easier.

Q: Is organising digital events cheaper than organising classic events?

Yes, especially since there is no travel and expense.

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Photo Credit: BlueJeans Events

“There are fewer unknowns with live events”

Q: If the future of the meetings industry will be green, where do we start?

The easiest way to start is by replacing paper elements with digital technology and recyclable, reusable materials. There are many other factors to consider such as electricity, etc., but this may take time to develop.

Q: What will be the key trait of a great event organiser after the corona crisis?

Resilience to change and flexibility/agility to do their job differently.

Q: What is your view of the future? Where is the meetings industry headed?

I believe it will rebound quickly, and hybrid will be important for a while; however that will morph into a new reality where people will continue to gather in-person and the technology will be used to augment and improve experiences, not replace them.

Q: What is the most surprising fact about organising events?

How easy people think it is!

EXTRA QUESTION FOR AMANDA

Q: High Tech or High Touch?

High touch! Technology can only take you so far….