Conferences and Events - Trends in 2017 and the Year Ahead












Rose was recently featured in Hospitality & Events North magazine, talking about trends in 2017 and the next year – this is what she had to say: 

Did you spot any changes in trends in 2017 that have made you rethink your strategy for the year ahead?

ABPCO already had plans in place to make 2017 a year of growth and change.  As our 30th anniversary it was always going to be a time to reflect and consider the next thirty years, which is why we reviewed our values to ensure they were fit for purpose and reflected our members’ needs.  Other changes that have caused pause for thought are GDPR and the Eventwell campaign.  Whilst data and mental health are far apart in terms of their subject matter, they are on everyone’s lips and likely to make a big impact over the coming months.

Did you hit your financial targets in 2017, and how has this shaped your 2018 targets? 

We have continued to grow our membership over the last year and hit our budget, which is great news for ABPCO.  As a not for profit organisation our focus is reinvesting in our offering and the membership -  2018’s budget will reflect these plans.

Which area of the wider events industry would you like to see improve?

At a recent event focused on “what keeps you up at night” our members highlighted several key areas that need to be considered moving forward.
  • GDPR and how it relates to membership organisations and their relationships with agencies
  • Risk assessments and crisis management in a blame and liability focused culture
  • No shows at free-to-attend events making it impossible to select the right sized venues
  • Conflicting priorities and commitment amongst stakeholders and volunteers who don’t always value the importance of events or their role
  • Understanding ‘Compliance’ and how to work with it
  • Managing engagement and retention, and workloads when key members of the team leave, particularly with the growth of transient staff
  • Wellbeing and health issues amongst staff, colleagues and clients affecting their ability to deliver
Some eventprofs claim ‘Wellbeing’ is the No.1 issue for 2018. Do you agree? If not, where would you rank it alongside: Security, Eventtech, Price, Catering, etc?

I agree that it is an important subject, however as previously mentioned GDPR is another hot topic and one that is still causing confusion and unease for many as they don’t understand the full implications.

Have you heard of the Events Industry Board and are you aware of any initiatives from it?

We are aware of the EIB but it is only in the periphery of what we are doing but we think it is something we should engage more closely with.

What is your favourite aspect of the meetings and events industry, and what do you find the most frustrating industry-related issue facing you.

I love the way our industry comes together as a team.  The individual members may vary but working together achieves great results and ABPCO as a whole is a great example of that.


Rose Padmore, co-chair of ABPCO


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