Why Events Need a Great Reimagination

By Shannon Byck and Joe Nishi

COVID may no longer be a part of our daily conversation but the lasting impacts are still evident today. As we sat plotting out the outline for this article, we noticed how much we struggled with cohesive and creative thoughts. If we were to be honest, the article could have been titled The Great Procrastination as most days it seems easier to avoid the task at hand versus getting things done. Why the funk? For the last few years, we paused doing our day-to-day jobs of strategic venue sourcing and event design. That pause for most caused a shift in focus from the pre-COVID work routine to an attempt to stay innovative, and for lack of a better word – useful, in an evolving events industry.

So, our goal for moving forward is embracing the “Great Reimagination”. You can insert any word you like after Re, and there are many, such as reinvent, reassess, recalibrate, redesign, reengage, reevaluation and reconnect but our word is reimangination. We chose it as it best reflects what we see this time as a chance to make change so we do not go back to the mindset on how and why we did things before.

Here are a few tips to help you embrace your great reimagination.


We are in the events industry because we love what we do and that is creating events through experiential event design…or redesign. What do we do when we feel that creativity is underwhelming?


  • Read an industry magazine and/or google to see what other organizations are doing to gather creative suggestions.
  • Make time for hobbies and activities that allow for wellbeing and much needed time to recharge.
  • Surround yourself with other industry professionals by becoming a member of an association and be an active volunteer. Also, do not hesitate to ask for assistance. If you are a solo entrepreneur, instead of feeling like you are in this alone, connect with professionals that can brainstorm with you. Collaboration is key.
  • Create an on-going storyboard of event components that you like so they are top of mind when you are working on a new or existing project.


Possibly a better way to phrase it is planning as we do not know it. The event industry is at a turning point, and we should see this as an opportunity to re-evaluate the why and embrace a new way of thinking. We can guarantee that companies and associations underwent change during COVID and hopefully see this as time to step back to assess the why and take action to do things differently.


  • Do not be afraid to make mistakes and feel like you cannot step outside of your comfort zone in fear of hearing criticism. Embrace criticism as constructive feedback that you can learn from.
  • We cannot and should not be looking at how we did things in 2019. Our industry in 2019 did not have the labour shortage and the inflation rates that we are navigating through now.
  • Embrace that we do not know what we do not know. It is OK to not have the answers but surround yourself with professionals that you can collaborate with to get the answers.
  • Remove from your vocabulary – “That is how we have done it in the past”.
  • Set boundaries on your bandwidth and accept that it is OK to say no.


Forward thinking makes us optimistic for the future. It puts us all at an advantage to embrace opportunities. Thinking ahead provides the chance to be analytical and creative, proactive versus reactive and allows for the ability to make change and adapt.


  • Embrace technology and the assistance it can provide you to make your planning process that much easier.
  • Stay on top of the latest trends and best practices that will help you grow and adapt. There are unlimited resources such as industry association events and webinars to participate in.
  • Reevaluate how you market events. Sending out mass emails may no longer be the hook to get your attendees to participate.
  • Rethink traditional event design and reassess how to make your event programming more experiential.

Back in January 2023, we wrote an article on A Fresh Outlook for Meetings: What to expect in 2023, and our perspective still stands: the past few years have been challenging and we are stronger because of it and we could not be more excited for the future and resiliency of the business events industry.

So as you embrace your “re” word, to paraphrase Albert Einstein, “Logic will get you from A to Z and great REimagination will get you everywhere”.



Shannon Byck and Joe Nishi are with Meeting Encore Ltd., which recently celebrated its 32nd year of assisting clients with their strategic sourcing needs. Meeting Encore’s team of industry professionals can be reached at 905.403.9646 or via their website at www.meetingencore.com.




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