The transition to a work-from-home culture has significantly impacted various industries, with the events sector facing unique challenges.
A recent survey by IBTM World for The Culture Creators Report 2023 reveals that 87% of event professionals believe face-to-face events are more crucial than ever in today’s remote working landscape. These in-person experiences play a key role in building relationships, enhancing team performance, and boosting morale in an increasingly segregated workplace.
Nick Nagle, Marketing Manager at IBTM World, highlights the post-pandemic resurgence of events but acknowledges the accompanying epidemic of burnout. “Stress isn’t a new topic for event planners, but we’re now working with a backdrop of new challenges. This is taking its toll on the industry,” he states. The rise of remote work, which increased fivefold since the pandemic, has added to these pressures.
The job role of event professionals has become more stressful, with 79% admitting to feeling more pressure than before the pandemic. The profession is now ranked as the third most stressful, following military service and home health aide, surpassing even surgeons and first responders. This stress is partly due to their evolving roles, which now demand more tech, data, and digital capabilities.
Event organizers are being pushed beyond their traditional comfort zones, catering to digitally-enabled audiences and new experience technologies that gained prominence during the pandemic. Despite these increased responsibilities and workload, 90% of event professionals report no change in their compensation packages.
This situation hints at potential recruitment and retention issues within the industry, as research from The American Psychological Association shows that half of undervalued employees may seek new roles within a year. Jessica Charles, Vice President of Programming and Events at Forbes, expresses concern over the potential loss of talented individuals due to the demanding nature of event planning.
The importance of events in the business sector remains high, with 81% of professionals emphasizing their role in forging and strengthening team relationships. Despite these challenges, 64% of professionals would still recommend the industry, underscoring their passion and dedication.
To address these issues, IBTM has introduced a ‘ReFuel’ zone in their 2023 event, offering attendees a space to relax and recharge, featuring sound and aromatherapy healing and a solo working area. This initiative highlights the need for acknowledging and supporting the mental and physical well-being of event professionals in this demanding and rapidly evolving industry.