TUESDAY 4 SEP 2018 3:59 PM


The workforce is shifting; what delegates want from events is changing fast. To stay on top of what the audience wants, a company must change its offering just as fast, especially when its audience consists of Millennials, a generation that doesn’t know life before technology.

London-based service event agency Live Union has produced a new report called ‘Anatomy of a 2018 Delegate,’ which gives an insight into what today’s audience actually values.

The report covers the five areas that play the most significant role for the engagement of today’s delegates: personalisation, brain-friendly quality, networking, entertaining and the content’s ability to be shared between delegates’ own communications. The results of the report show that delegates in 2018 are more cultured, demanding, but at the same time more progressive towards events.

Jez Paxman, creative strategy director at Live Union, says, “The way we are consuming content is radically changing. With a multitude of distractions at our fingertips, companies need to work harder than ever to relate to today’s employee.”

According to a research held by Deloitte, a multinational professional services network, 43% of Millennials, and 61% of the generation after Millennials, often referred to as Generation Z, employees show little desire of staying in a job for longer than two years.

Paxman says, “Employee events are a good example of how companies need to adapt a traditional work scenario to engage effectively with today’s workers. Gone are the days of lecture-style presentations. Speakers now, more than ever, need to think differently when it comes to presentations, and having an understanding of how the brain engages with and retains ideas, and attention, is key.”

For a company to achieve employee engagement, it needs to provide brain stimuli to its employees. With the average attention span standing at 10-20 minutes, information that a company feels the need to convey to employ should be delivered through “immersive, educational, collaborative and shareable experiences,” as Paxman says.

As stated in the report, peer-to-peer style presentations are highly successful. A prime example of that is this year’s Oracle OpenWorld event, where 81% of attendees deemed the ‘collective learning’ sessions as more memorable, while 74& said they were more helpful.

“The choice of how and what to present can mean the difference between the audience buying into a pitch, or not. After all, putting on an event which no one remembers is futile and costly,” Paxman says. In order for presentations to hold the audience’s attention, they need to embrace interaction, draw inspiration from TV, take risks, humanise the content, provide visual storytelling and entertain.

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