2018: Data, Risk, Wellbeing and Teamwork

As well as being the owner/manager of OD&V, Rose Padmore is currently the Joint-Chair of ABPCO. In January she "looked into her crystal ball" for Hospitality & Events North magazine:

"The last 12 months have been a great time for ABPCO. Our 30th anniversary was always going to be a time to reflect and consider the next 30 years, which is why we reviewed our values to ensure they were fit for purpose and reflected our members' needs. The result is a true understanding of why we exist and what we do - ABPCO is proud to enable human enrichment through face-to-face gatherings.

The year ended with our Excellence Awards at Harrogate Convention Centre, a truly great venue at which to gather and consider what is next for the Association and what changes we should expect of 2018.

From the Association's point of view, we will have new chairs from June 2018, with Jo Powell of Macmillan Cancer Support and Kate Sargent of BioScientifica Ltd taking over. They will face a new set of challenges, the most notable of which is probably General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It is on everyone's lips at the moment, we all need to be ready for it and understand its place in our organisation. ABPCO has been keeping up to speed and arranging education for members, but there is still much to learn and it is certainly keeping our members up at night.

Mental health and wellbeing are also becoming ever more prevalent as it dawns on both organisers and attendees that there is more to life than work. As we all strive for a better work-life balance we need to find ways to work smarter and more effectively. The smartphone, tablet and email might have significant benefits, but they make it harder to switch off. I imagine 2018 will include a lot of discussion and focus on this as people learn to switch off and relax when necessary. Management will also need to step up and engage with this topic, as they support staff and colleagues to ensure they don't 'burn out' - something that can have consequences for both an individual and those working and interacting with them.

Compliance will also continue to play a huge role in our world with risk assessment and crisis management playing an ever-bigger part. We simply cannot plan for every eventuality, but there will be a need to build layer upon layer of contingencies to ensure we are all as secure and prepared as we possibly can be.

Most importantly though, I look forward to seeing the industry continuing to work together to deliver truly outstanding events. You only have to look at the growing social networks, associations and membership organisations such as ABPCO to recognise that people want to work and create great results together. Our team-driven attitude is what makes being a part of this industry so great and I look forward to seeing what we will do next. In particular, we are supported by a fantastic and growing cadre of young professionals who see our industry as a career in which they want to develop and grow. It fills me with reassurance that they are our future.

As for the ABPCO team we will be in great hands when Jo and Kate take over. In the meantime, I am looking forward to some exciting activities during the last six months of my tenure alongside my joint-chair, Therese Dolan.

Opening Doors & Venues is an independent and highly respected Professional Conference Organiser agency established in 2000. In 2015 OD&V was the winner of the ABPCO Excellence Awards for Best Agency Conference Organiser. The team specialise in 360ยบ project management which can include venue finding, delegate recruitment and registration, marketing strategy and design, and the development of creative and engaging content. To find out more visit the website www.opening-doors.org.uk, call Rose Padmore or Madalina Marancas on 01562 731788 or email rpadmore@opening-doors.org.uk.

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