For event planners hoping to transition to a post-pandemic in-person experience, a few tips to help ease the transition.
Provide a preview. To prepare attendees for the changes they’ll encounter at a post-COVID conference, the American Industrial Hygiene Association is considering creating a video experience that would show attendees “here’s what you’re going to expect from us X number of days out, here’s what you’ll need to bring. … Here’s what the exhibit hall will look like,” says AIHA’s Bethany Chirico.
Document the event. Associations should spend money to have a professional photographer onsite who can snap photos that can be used as stock art in future publications and marketing materials. Crowd shots from past in-person events “aren’t really relevant right now,” says Aaron Wolowiec, CAE, of Event Garde.
Collect participant data that you might need later. If an attendee, staff member, or venue representative tests positive for COVID-19, you may need to communicate with participants and the local health department as part of contact tracing, Wolowiec says.
Stress the importance of mask and social-distancing guidelines. Because the Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance is a chemical-oriented industry, members are used to following respiratory protection measures. Still, “I’m going to emphasize in a major way that they need to bring that mentality now to this part of the job, making sure that none of us makes each other sick,” says Executive Director Kurt Riesenberg. “That’ll be an important component, I think, of us being able to pull this off.”