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Planners Moving Forward Series- Abbe Adair, Frankenmuth Insurance

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May 27, 2022
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Reading time: 2 min

This post is part of the HopSkip Planner Spotlight Series where HopSkip spotlight's planners across the industry to bring awareness of how they adapted to COVID-19, communicating and lessons learned and sharing how they are viewing the meetings and events industry in a post-pandemic world. 


 

Name: Abbe Adair

Company Name: Frankenmuth Insurance

Job Title: Marketing Manager

Years of Experience: 18

How do you think you are positioned, after months of persevering with the pandemic, to take advantage of our new and disrupted meetings/events landscape?
 
At Frankenmuth Insurance we continued to host meetings and events throughout the pandemic. At the onset of the pandemic we transitioned to all virtual meetings and continued to do so into the first half of 2021 and beyond. During the second half of 2021 we began to host small, in-person gatherings that were held primarily outdoors. We adopted a hybrid model for some of our events and for our overall meetings and events strategy. I feel these components combine to set us up for great success as we look to get back to a more "normal" schedule for the remainder of 2022 and into 2023. 
 
As our community moves forward with planning in-person meetings, what new technologies or processes are you implementing that you may have not looked at before?
 
Virtual is here to stay! While I do not believe a virtual meeting will ever provide the same value when it comes to building relationships as an in-person meeting, I do think there are benefits to virtual. Virtual meetings save time and funds. There are instances when the key objective is sharing information and a virtual meeting makes sense. I also think there are instances when the main objective is to enhance or build a relationship and nothing can take the place of doing this in person. 
 
As we see virtual meetings transition back to face to face, hybrid meetings are beginning to be the vehicle to return to normalcy. What are your thoughts on hybrid meetings versus traditional fully in-person meetings?
 
The hybrid concept is here to stay. At Frankenmuth Insurance we have leveraged two different hybrid concepts one being meetings that have virtual attendees as well as in-person attendees and the other being more of an annual hybrid strategy. The strategy allows for hosting particular events throughout the year virtually while others are held in-person. I foresee us getting back to hosting all intended in-person meetings without a virtual component. But I think we will continue to leverage an overall hybrid strategy, hosting both styles of meetings throughout the year. 
 
In your opinion, what do you think the biggest value for your attendees is in regards to returning to live events?
 
Relationships! Relationships! Relationships! I truly believe that live meetings and events provide a tremendous amount of value when it comes to building new relationships and enhancing existing relationships.
 
As the pandemic fades away and we return to face-to-face events what do you hope changes, either for planners or hoteliers, in the traditional RFP and proposal process as a result of all of the learnings from the last 20+ months?
 
My hope is that the entire industry will offer a little more grace and space. Finding and retaining quality staff is challenging in our current environment. These days, reviewing and responding to an RFP or proposal may take a little longer to accomplish. We all need to work together to accomplish one common goal; hosting and executing top notch, live meetings and events. 
 

This post is part of the HopSkip Planner Spotlight Series where HopSkip spotlight's planners across the industry to bring awareness of how they adapted to COVID-19, communicating and lessons learned and sharing how they are viewing the meetings and events industry in a post-pandemic world. 

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