The Hospitality and Events Industry during COVID-19 is Inspiring…
2020 has been the strangest and most impacting year in my lifetime and I happen to be in the industry that has been hit the hardest by COVID-19. Although it is devastating to see companies struggling, staff out of work and events coming to a sudden stop, I have also seen some really inspiring motions made from those in the hospitality and events industry as companies and individuals have been adapting in ways we never thought we could…or would even have to! It is really important to highlight some of the positives that we have seen during this extraordinary period, no matter how big or small.
At NewWave, myself and Alicja have certainly been motivated by others in the industry at this time and we like to think our story has helped others remain hopeful for the future of events, just like us (read more about our journey here. In this blog, I just want to talk about some of the good that we have seen from the hospitality and events industry during COVID-19 and also help show how you or your company can use this time to create something that you would otherwise not have been able to do.
During this ‘down time’ for the industry, we personally have focused a lot on creating and maintaining our relationships with others and getting the word out there about the brand new NewWave Events. As you can imagine, like many of us, there have been countless zoom meetings and catch ups! Having the time to do this has been great and it really gives us the ‘we’re all in this together’ feel when we talk to so many others in the industry going through similar experiences. It has also been extremely interesting to hear how companies and individuals have been spending their spare time this year without having to work 14-hour days, 7 days a week! Probably enjoying the relaxing summer at home, you might think.
Well, yes there has certainly been some of that ‘making the most of it’ attitude, but the novelty soon wore off and events workers were itching to get back to doing something!! Sitting around, doing nothing just isn’t in our personality – as they say, you have to be a special type of person to work in events!
A huge development in the industry has been the introduction of virtual events, which happened almost overnight. These include online versions of usual ‘in person’ events and range from virtual cooking classes to virtual magic shows and even virtual pub crawls! They are a great way to keep everyone connected at this time when we are the most apart that we’ve ever been and it’s all a bit of fun to lift everyone’s spirits. They’re not quite the same as what we are used to… but they’re certainly a great substitute! They’re also something none of us probably imagined we would be doing, let alone them being extremely successful and popular events.
We’ve also seen the hospitality sector getting creative in order to bring in business in this time of recession. One of our favourites was from The Beeswing Pub in Kettering and The Woolpack Inn in Islip, who have started offering a socially safe working environment for all those now working from home. You can sit at a table with up to 5 work friends for just £10 per person and receive unlimited tea and coffee as well as free WIFI all day.
This is perfect for those needing a break from their makeshift home office and also a great way to support local businesses in the current circumstances. This is a brilliant example of businesses adapting to the current climate and moulding their services to fit consumer needs.
Others that we have spoken to, have spent some time looking at their internal operations further and found new and improved ways to manage things which are more efficient and more cost effective. These small changes are what has allowed some companies to remain open during these tough times and this will have a huge impact once the industry is booming again. It is these small adjustments that this extra time has allowed companies to evaluate and discover which may make all the difference going forward. It is the first time many of us have actually stopped in a number of years!!
These are just a selection of what we have seen in the hospitality and events sector over the last few months. This ability to adapt, keep going and stay positive is what has inspired myself and others I have been in contact with. The industry is struggling more than ever, but the resilience and determination of those in it is uplifting and encouraging. It will be sure to leave us stronger than before. I am wishing all the best to others in the industry currently, and I hope this blog can spread some positivity and perhaps motivate some of you to make something great out of this experience if you haven’t already! We have to keep going… even if that means taking on other job roles and opportunities temporarily!
“Everything happens for a reason.”
Lucy Morton, NewWave Events.
Article Posted on Sunday 18th October 2020 at 9:10am