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Don’t let the class of 2020 become the lost generation

Liz Taylor, founder and CEO of Taylor Lynn Corporation (TLC), explores the need to keep 2020 event management graduates in the industry…

Our world has changed beyond recognition, and, as we are all planning for how it will look like in the future, there also needs to be careful consideration given to retaining the talent that was due to enter the industry hot off the heels from their summer 2020 graduation ceremonies.

As an industry, we cannot allow these graduates to become the lost generation of event professionals. Nurturing the best talent has always been a subject close to my heart, and for a number of years, I’ve worked closely with Manchester Metropolitan University lecturing and mentoring students on its event management degree course.

Now more than ever special attention needs to be given to ensuring the graduates, and in fact all team members, do not leave the industry. Part of adjusting our business models and planning should indeed include plans for how as industry professionals we ensure we have the teams able to implement the new style of events and meetings that will hopefully start in the autumn.

We have been extremely lucky over the past 10-15 years in that the industry has attracted the top talent, and we have all worked hard to ensure our teams are trained and nurtured so that they choose to stay and grow and flourish to become amazing event professionals. This can’t suddenly stop because of Covid-19. Even more attention needs to be given to our teams where they benefit from our experience to help them stay motivated during this time, it’s not good enough for them to stand on the sidelines, we all need to be involved in shaping the future.

If we want our teams to stay in the industry then surely they need to help business owners shape what events and meetings are going to look like and how to implement those plans. Having spent three years studying event management, many students now face a bleak outlook – however, I remain hopeful that we can bounce back and they can help us create a new future. We all know the resurgence won’t come by chance. I have had to draw upon my reserves of resilience and explore new opportunities to keep my business alive.

I feel a sense of responsibility to give them optimism, a little of my passion and some of the tools with which to build a future in the industry. That’s why I’ve launched a virtual tutorial for event management students and business professionals. The Business, Brains & Banter session will cover topics around the future of event management, how to keep motivated during the pandemic and thoughts on how the wider hospitality sector can recover from the impact of coronavirus.

Organised in association with Dr Zeyad Abualhamael (Zee), head of Project Square One and fellow lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University, the hour will include a detailed discussion around how I have utilised 35 years of event management and business experience to sustain a successful event management company through these difficult times.

I’ll be looking at why employing skills such as diversity, creativity and innovation has enabled me to develop new business opportunities, and importantly, why I feel these will also help students and graduates through the challenging months ahead.

Business, Brains & Banter Virtual Tutorial for event management students and business professionals takes place on June 16, 2020, from 7-8pm. Visit Business, Brains and Banter With Liz Taylor, Hosted by Dr Zee Abualhamael for information on how to book a free place.