Good day wherever you are in the world. We are now in our 13th month of the pandemic. Since our last GMID, the world has suffered loss, loneliness, fear, and social injustice that we did not see coming at the time.
Our industry and PCMA family experienced personal displacement, economic hardships and upheaval that was tough for all of us to watch.
And during this time the global business events industry has gone through a period of reflection and exploration about our role in a post-pandemic world.
We are not the same industry we were a year ago. And our role in a world emerging from COVID will be different. But it will be no less relevant. In fact, I believe business events will be more vital to a world grappling with recovery.
Business events will play a role in recovery and it will because of the choices we make right now about who we are and how we pursue this opportunity that is right in front of us.
In 2021 governments, corporations and organizations around the world are making economic and social transformation their focus. Connecting people with purpose to ideas and opportunities to create economic and social transformation – the business of human connections — is what we do better than anyone else. The world needs us. And we need to be up to the challenge.
But the way our audiences want to connect and the purpose those connections serve is changing. And we need to accept that it is the needs of our audiences that we must focus on serving…not a channel.
PCMA is dedicating our focus in 2021 to better understanding the needs of business events participants and their stakeholders and turning those insights into learning products and experiences for you.
As I said a year ago about the then-looming pandemic, business events cannot be part of the problem, but they will be part of the solution.
Today we can see industry recovery taking shape. Business expectations are rising, travel is restarting and even though we are all tired, whether you are in Singapore, Stockholm or Chicago, we are more hopeful than we have been in a year.
That doesn’t mean that 2021 is going to be easy or that we are going to pick up where we left off in January 2020. Our world has changed and so has our industry. And we need to be ready to embrace change. But PCMA is more than ready for the challenges and opportunities ahead.