DEI Spotlight: Shawn Cheng

Digital and hybrid events aren’t yet the core of day-to-day operations for Shawn Cheng, a project coordinator at MCI Group Canada. But, he said, the conversation around such events has increased steadily year after year. Cheng has managed projects ranging from a Tokyo healthcare conference with 800 participants to a global dermatologic company’s sponsorship program at a congress with 12,000 participants. He earned his certification in 2015, thanks to a scholarship provided by Meetings + Conventions Calgary.

How specifically are you using digital and hybrid events at your organization?
At MCI, providing cost-effective digital solutions to our clients is a key focus. Live-streaming, hybrid events, content capture, and social-media engagement are some of the solutions we currently are working on for different projects.

What is the future for digital events?
I believe we will see more and more connection between the digital and face-to-face events, and eventually, it will become one full experience we provide to our audience.

PCMA did a great job to advance this by running a successful PCMA Live hybrid event at Convening Leaders. Another example is the FRESH Conference in Europe, which will take place simultaneously in four different cities.

Are you seeing more or less interest in attending F2F events as a result of your digital/hybrid efforts?
I see hybrid events becoming an option for those who cannot attend the F2F event. And if they have an excellent digital experience, it will increase their desire to attend the F2F event in the future.

What are you excited about with the power of digital events?
I believe the future of events/meetings is in both physical and digital format, and quite often a mix of both. Digital meetings will help organizations engage with a broader audience, communicate more efficiently, and remove some physical barriers and restrictions of F2F events. They will provide a new and better experience.

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