21st Century Conference Experience - Zukunft Personal 2018

Photo: Peter Porst – Zukunft Personal

To cater to the ever changing needs of their attendees, HR events, just as much as other meetings are constantly pressured to broaden their spectrum of topics covered and pump up the volume on everything they do from conference design to participant engagement strategies. The same trends that are shaping the world of work, like digitalisation, globalisation, demographic trends among others, are also influencing how HR conferences can best deliver on their promise to educate, inform and inspire visitors.

Every year, Zukunft Personal is the destination for forward-thinking HR managers and workplace leaders to discuss the latest ideas, tools, case studies and trends. In 2017 a staggering 17,809 HR shakers and movers made it to the fair, breaking all records. To keep its high standards up, one can be sure that the organisers of the 2018 edition have already started looking into new ways through which the #ZP18 could offer a unique attendee experience that moves away from the everyday.

Zukunft Personal is the destination for forward-thinking HR managers and workplace leaders to discuss the latest ideas, tools, case studies and trends. Click To Tweet

As regular visitors of the Zukunft Personal our goal with this blog post is to provide you with a sneak peak of what lies ahead and help you gear up for the 2018 edition. We explore how such a huge fair can still provide spaces and places for more intimate conversations, make networking around certain topics easier, break down the silos between the different aspects of the people profession, from Learning & Developing, via Employee Wellness to core HR businesses, as well as bridge traditional companies with up and coming startups.

Gain PRACTICAL INSIGHT to fortify your knowledge of HR

Content is key, but the future belongs to practice and practical application of insight. Have you noticed that in 2017 more and more exhibitors started focusing on how they could offer intense workshops through which theoretical knowledge could be put to immediate use? This year’s expo was packed with whiteboard sessions, virtual reality simulations and learning by doing presentations; all of which were well received by the participants. This tendency follows those developments in the HR space which we all know about. We are entering into an era in which HR events will offer more actionable content and transformative practical insight through collective workshops, action-zone trainings, solution checks or interactive presentations. Expect 2018 to offer more of these kinds of disruptive, but very useful, practical jam sessions. After all, if we want different results in our organisations, we need different approaches, and change the way we learn and do things.

Content is key, but the future belongs to practice and practical application of insight through collective workshops, action-zone trainings, solution checks or interactive presentations. Click To Tweet

Benefit more from the use of the WHITE SPACE

We no longer have to travel to Germany or another continent to hear top HR executives and thought-leaders speak on stage. Thanks to video sharing platforms, such as TED.com or Youtube, as well as accessible live webinars, we are able to do just that from the comfort of our living rooms and offices. Yet, each year people show up in long queues at innovative HR conferences, such as the Zukunft Personal. The main motivation behind this tendency is that people still love to meet their fellow colleagues in the white space of these events. Expect 2018 to offer more unstructured time over which participants could mingle, network, let off steam and hang out. Witnessing the convergence of HR, Tech and Design, coupled with the intention to ensure places of work are conducive to wellbeing and performance, expect the “Future Worxx” area to grow too. Why not schedule some of your 2018 event networking meetings in the beautiful and inspiring space featuring the latest workstations, mood pulse meters, ergonomic furniture, or even a cosy café style workspaces? Nothing better to get those creative thinking processes going than a comfortable armchair and a nice cup of coffee.

Get comfortable with INFORMATION OVERWHELM

The speed of new research, information and technological advances is increasing exponentially. IBM’s Watson earns a new university degree almost every day, and if we, the workers in the knowledge economy want to keep up, we need to be open and flexible as well to new information, and integrating new information in our current awareness quicker. How can these types of events find the right balance between offering visitors a great learning experience, but not overwhelming them with too much new information?

So, what we observe is a clear shift from purely offering up this information to participants. Expect 2018 to provide you with more and more opportunities through which you will be able to make sense of the latest trends and test new solutions. We guarantee you the most popular speakers, and the most visited exhibitors will be those, that not only offer new information, but understand how people learn, how to overcome learning anxiety and ensure visitors leave the event with a clear understanding and direction on applying the newly acquired knowledge.

Stimulate the SENSES of visitors

We expect that events, such as Europe’s largest HR trade show, through carefully selected exhibitors and well crafted program selection, will focus more on how they could wake up and engage all senses in an all-round experience. In 2018 expect exhibitors to offer more and more taste and touch stimulations aiming to convey messages around a specific subject. This tendency is not exactly against our will as we love trying out the newest massage chairs, sip through the cocktail and smoothie selections of the exhibitors, or fly around the sky in virtual reality goggles. Let’s face it. Our attention span is shortening, and to awaken our curiosity, we need to be engaged and present fully in the moment. So even in a busy exhibition hall, creating bubbles of engagement is possible, by engaging not only the mind of the passers-by, but also their different senses. Unleash your creativity to stimulate taste buds, touch, smells and most importantly… their imagination!

Be entertained – FESTIVALISATION of the Zukunft Personal

What has been nicknamed festivalisation of events has gained foothold in Europe over the course of the last years. Such mash-ups come in all formats, focus and sizes. These events, such as London’s Tech Week, combine all sorts of gatherings (gala dinners, film festivals, book launches, concerts, sport events …) and about to inject new energy into the conference industry of the future. We expect the future editions of Zukunft Personal to broaden their menu of offerings and bring in new entertainments or other forms of services.

Zunkunft Personal 2017 - HR:motion - the riverboat edition

Photo: Stefan Wernz – Zukunft Personal

Zukunft Personal goes GLOBAL

Having spoken to a few Zukunft Personal Veterans, who have been visiting the fair for more than ten years, one clear trend is emerging. Labour markets, HR and the world of work is no longer confined by country borders. What works in one country or sector may very well work in another, and startups, solutions and thought-leaders emerge from the four corners of the globe. So in line with this trend, we expect even more international key-note speakers, delegates and exhibitors from other countries in 2018. Zukunft Personal is aiming at being recognised as the Nr. 1 HR event in Europe, and is well on its way by gathering world-class speakers from other countries all the while keeping the event accessible to everyone.

The HR event landscape is going through vast changes from top to bottom. Gone are the days in which HR meetings consisted of a series of talks, PPT presentations and pretty lunch boxes. Today’s conference visitors are searching for new and unique ways to maximise their investment and participation, and we are sure that the 2018 edition of the Zukunft Personal will provide just that.

Where would you like to see the biggest HR gathering of Europe shift in the future in terms of its organisation, topics or speakers? Let us know in the comment section!

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