Refocusing on Service and Safety at Live Events

Bringing events—whether they are tradeshows, conferences, or entertainment—back, not just to the city I call home, but to the whole world, is crucial to restoring vitality to the overall economy and the industry which we love. 

Las Vegas has a long history of being the Entertainment Capital of the World.  From legendary performers of yesteryear to today’s biggest headliners, Las Vegas has become a mecca for both artists and visitors who are attracted by the excitement and glamour of this world-class destination.

I live and work in this city which hosts some of the most amazing tradeshows and conventions, like MAGIC, COSMOPROF North America, and IMEX America, attracting exhibitors and attendees from all over the world.  Not only do these shows bring in the tourism Las Vegas enjoys, but they also provide employment for 100,000+ workers in a multitude of different service, hospitality, production and construction industries in event venues throughout town.

If there’s one thing you should know about Las Vegas, it’s that it will never stop. Live events, here and all over the world, are a vibrant, dynamic, innovative, and essential part of doing business, and an impactful part of Las Vegas’ economy.

As Co-Chair of the ESCA Health & Safety Committee and a member of the Industry Event & Health Advisory Group for GBAC/ISSA, we are developing standards for a re-opening of trade shows and live events. It is of paramount importance to identify new ways of creating the environments which foster necessary face-to-face interactions, while implementing operational practices to promote the health and safety of exhibitors, event planners, and attendees alike. 

 

Practices which will be key to moving forward may include:

 

1. Health and Safety Precautions

  • Rethinking space allocation to accommodate physical distancing requirements, including areas like registration, walkway traffic flow, queue lines, and capacity levels
  • Ensuring staff serving you on the show floor has all the necessary PPE equipment required, checking each individual’s temperature prior to arriving on the show site floor, and creating an enjoyable and safe environment during your time with us

 

 

2. Contactless Service

  • Options for exhibitors to work directly with our team including ordering products and services in the convenience of their booth space, hotel room, or remote location as well as the ability to approve and sign labor requests and new orders via text messages
  • Use of contactless communication methods such as texting and safe face-time opportunities to enable direct communication between exhibitors and GES on-site, as well as clients with their audiences

 

 

3. Increased Advance Communication

  • Robust advance communication and information delivery prior to attendees and exhibitors arriving on show-site, utilizing every form of messaging technology available
  • For instance, attendees may be able to receive the following items before they even leave home and could eliminate the need to visit a registration hub:
    • Hotel registration
    • Shuttle bus pickup information
    • Badge and exhibitor registration
  • For exhibitors, this may include more pre-/post-show communications and digital tools to handle things like forms, billing, and shipping orders

 

 

4. Sustainability Considerations

  • We are focused on going 100% paperless at show site.  We will encourage the use of technology for all new orders as well as authorization of labor tickets. 
  • We will utilize a texting technology for more detailed conversation at show site with the ability to not only process new orders, but help provide answers to general questions, status of preshow ordered items, check on the status of your freight, as well as any post-show communication that might be needed. 

 

At GES, we are REfocusing and REinventing so we can REconnect our show organizers, event planners, exhibitors, attendees, and everyone else who loves engineering experiences.  Stay tuned for more as we build the ‘new norm’ together.

About the Author

Sheila LeMaster

Sheila LeMaster, CMP is Vice President of Exhibitor Services for GES in Las Vegas, NV. Sheila has over 30 years’ experience in the hotel hospitality and tradeshow convention industry. She has produced and supported shows both at GES as well as Mandalay Resort and Casino including McDonalds Peak Experience, Computer Associates Annual Convention, CES, MAGIC, CONEXPO, MINEXPO, ICSC, IMEX, IMTS, Natural Products, Western Veterinary Conference, the NBA All Star Game, and the 2016 Presidential Debate. Sheila has strong contacts in the hospitality industry and the community and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in hotel administration from the University of Nevada Las Vegas. At GES, she guides a team of over 100 professionals in maintaining client and customer relationships while providing exceptional customer service.

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