What a time in the world this is and a strange position we are all facing at the moment.
The Hospitality Industry (like many other) has been hit hard and will continue to be hit hard not only in the coming weeks, but the coming months and for some businesses – indefinitely. There’s so much uncertainty about what’s happening around closures, business support and the future of revenue. Many talented people from all areas of Hospitality from Event Managers to Executive Chefs are taking leave, being made redundant – and even worse – losing their jobs completely without remuneration with venues unsure if they will be able to open again on the other side of COVID-19.
I’ve had many Events & Wedding connections reach out for support and are looking for new positions – only to be faced with little, if not no opportunities in our sector. This is something that WILL change in the future and gosh it will be such a competitive market when everything gets back up and running – so all I can say is:
Over the past week, I have been communicating with contacts about the effects the business and economic environment is having on them, and on the venues they are working in. The results were the same in Events & Weddings - postponed and cancelled events are taking place and all managers and business owners are feeling it hard – if they are currently still in a position to be operating that is. Here’s a couple of words from some contacts:
“Enquires have slowed down during this period however it’s been great to have some quality time to improve our processes and conversations with those who are getting in touch. We’ve had a great response from our current clients to date with only 1% of event revenue being cancelled and the remainder being postponed.
I think this is the biggest shakeup our industry has seen for a long time.. maybe ever! It’s heartbreaking to see however I also have a great feeling that this will give us industry professionals a new perspective and forced creativity to make our industry greater than ever.”
Cara - Event & Sales Manager
Caves Coastal Bar & Bungalows - Caves Beach, Australia
“Enquiries are down for this current season 2020, we are facing a collapse with tourist bookings. Tourism and events are suffering a severe blow, there is uncertainty about the future right now. We remain positive though; the storm will soon be over, and we will be stronger than before. Italy, with its history, landscapes, food & wine, traditions, has still so much to offer. I am sure people will travel again, more than ever, after this long quarantine! At the moment the major part of businesses is closed and freelances workers are already facing the crisis.
Destination weddings are more affected than local weddings because Italy has already started to face the pandemic. This could mean that, when in my Country it will be over in the upcoming months, probably foreign clients won’t be able to come to Italy to celebrate their event because borders will be closed”
Marzia - Wedding Travel Coordinator
SO WHAT'S NEXT?
What can we do during this time of “self-distancing" and “self-isolation” with all of our efforts focusing on “flattening the curve”? Here are some tips and conversations you can have regarding moving forward and keeping positivity in mind:
IF YOU'RE A HOSPITALITY BUSINESS FACING POTENTIAL SHUTDOWN:
Take away / delivery options
Have you done a quick P&L – had a look at the options of takeaway or delivery for your business? Will this be an opportunity in the meantime or will it only cost more for the business to keep running?
Are you connected via Zoom?
Are you upping your internal communications remotely? This is a hard time all of your employees are facing and we’re all being met with continual doubt from the media so make sure your employees are well informed. Where meetings sometimes take away from the true core of the business – it’s kind of the opposite right now where internal support and communications are key, especially when being forced to work from home.
Can your corporate events and meetings be live-streamed?
Is this an option for your business? Can you offer the option of continuing their event within your venue with one or 2 speakers? Utilising companies such as Go Live Australia (who are currently offering significant discounts in Sydney) could potentially see the rate of your postponed and cancelled events limited.
IF YOU'RE AN EVENTS OR WEDDING COORDINATOR WHO HAS BEEN 'LET GO':
Look after yourself
Are you looking after yourself? Both mentally and physically? I myself have just joined The Upbeat – why not join me each week and jump around our living rooms to some tunes together?
Use your new free time purposefully – UPSKILL
Spend some time on upskilling – keep yourself in the positive mental game and continue learning – sign up to one of our Event Sales Courses or why not learn French or Macrame (I know we've all seen Pinterest photos and wanted to recreate them)!
Build your personal portfolio
Do you want to build on your career? Do you have a plan and know where you would LOVE to work next? Come up with your own proactive sales plan – how are you going to position and sell yourself when the time is right to start applying again?