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Planners Moving Forward Series- Ashley Luu, Coast to Coast Conferences & Events

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June 13, 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: Ashley Luu

Company Name: Coast to Coast Conferences & Events

Job Title: Event Coordinator

Years of Experience: 2

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?
 
After months of the pandemic, I am positioned to take advantage of our new and disrupted meeting/events landscape by adapting to the large-scale technical changes that our industry is creating. Entering the industry in a risky stage was a learning experience for me to develop skills that pre-pandemic event planners may not have used. By learning new technology, safety guidelines, and event processes, I was proven to adapt to many of the unfamiliar scenarios in our ever-changing world. In my experience, it is essential to combine the knowledge of pre-pandemic event planning and current event platforms to create successful events and meetings. We are in a creative market that innovates new products for in-person, virtual, and hybrid events for meeting planners like myself to incorporate into our events and for our clients. 
 
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?
 
Some new technologies that I am implementing into our in-person meetings are third-party applications like COVID-19 check-ins and badges. Applications like these have made it easier to organize and streamline our events for all parties involved. 
 
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?
 
I strongly approve of both hybrid and in-person events, given the circumstances and purpose of the event. Hybrid meetings offer a wider range of accessibility for audiences to attend meetings. While the magic of in-person interactions may not be present, hybrid platforms can implement attendee engagement like gamification, chats, and more to fill that "magic" gap. Of course, many will favor classic in-person events due to the more impactful feeling of being there with one another. Either way, I feel like the decision of hybrid versus in-person depends on what the client wants to achieve with their event.
 
In your opinion, what do you think the biggest value for your attendees is in regards to returning to live events?
 
Relationships, relationships, and relationships! Events will continue to bring people together based on interests and goals. Therefore, the biggest value for your attendees returning to live events is the connections yet to be made! 
 
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?
 
I believe that having each other's support is essential to creating a smooth and successful process for our clients. We all have excellent skillsets to help one another. More advanced technology that caters to planners' and hoteliers' use will expedite the traditional RFP and proposal process for both parties. 
 

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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