Experiential Ways to Address Five 2020 Meeting Industry Trends

January 22, 2020

Steve Silverman

Steve Silverman is the director of sales for The Diplomat Beach Resort, a member of the Curio Collection by Hilton in Hollywood, Florida.  Originally from New York, he graduated from The New York Restaurant School where he studied Hotel, Culinary & Hospitality Management.

A brand-new decade is upon us and seasoned meeting planners are looking for ways to keep up with innovative event industry trends. Whether it's eco or social responsibility, ensuring attendees have invigorating meeting spaces with beautiful views, healthy menu options, latest technology or unique breakout sessions, here are experiential ways to incorporate five key industry trends into your 2020 events.

Mindful Meetings & Menus Matter

Hotels around the world are starting to offer customized mindful meeting packages to enhance their guests’ overall wellbeing. Examples of wellness offerings include healthy superfood, gluten-free or plant-based vegetarian menu options, yoga classes, group guided meditations, fitness classes, innovative spa experiences, master Zen talks, puppy and ice cream socials to de-stress, invigorating activities and mindful excursions within the destination. Seasoned meeting planners know that creating the ideal catering menu and mindful activities for attendees is vital.

Align With Eco-Friendly Event & Meeting Initiatives  

These days attendees are looking for meeting venues that align with their environmental values. One core value that is gaining momentum is the conscientious handling of event waste and the use of plastic straws and water bottles. An estimated eight million tons of plastic waste enter the ocean each year, and research projects that plastic in our oceans could triple in a decade. Plastic pollution not only impacts our waters and marine life, but also our food chain and overall health. 

Many of the major hotel chains are taking notice: last year Hilton announced it removed plastic straws from its 650 managed properties, with a goal to double its social impact investments and cut its global environmental impact in half by 2030. Ask your venue partners what they are doing to address sustainability. 

Be Tech Savvy

2020 is upon us, and with that comes a new surge of technological advancements. With the endless waves of new ideas, apps and innovations launching each day, technology is helping meeting planners execute effective and successful events. For example, alerting and customized apps are on the rise. Alerts can be set up to notify event planners when their internet connection is reaching the maximum number of users or bandwidth. Many groups are also developing their own event apps, which can include anything from featuring its full program agendas to image sharing and live polling to further increase engagement.

Convene for a Cause

Each year, thousands of people from around the globe gather at convention hotels for meetings and events of all sorts. Fortunately, corporate social responsibility is on the rise, and there are several prominent hospitality properties with a wide range of offerings, including employee volunteer programs, sustainability policies, and “meetings with a purpose.”   

Go Beyond the Boring in the Boardroom

Corporate executives are flying more than ever to attend meetings and conferences at hotels around the world. Often boredom is synonymous with the word boardroom, and unfortunately, it’s a reasonable comparison. Full day meetings in mundane, monochromatic rooms tends to leave attendees feeing dozy, uninspired and antsy to get outside for a breath of fresh air. This can also offset their excitement, focus and decision-making process which ultimately defeats the overall objective of the meeting.

Be sure to make your next boardroom meetings more appealing, comfortable and successful so your guests keep coming back each year. Some things to consider are ideal room temperatures, fun breakout sessions relevant to the destination to foster excitement amongst your guests, and location, location, location! Whether you’re in a tropical or cooler destination, natural light is always key to a productive boardroom meeting.


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