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Going all hybrid

Last year we suddenly had to learn how to deal with this new way of online gathering that we were catapulted into. Now we are facing a new challenge in the way we meet: hybrid events.

So we should take this moment of upheaval as a chance and combine the best of both worlds: Bring in large, international online audiences who enjoy the luxury to join from anywhere at any time, as well as cherishing the priceless feeling of meeting with people in real life on-site. Combine these ingredients with the newest technologies to enable real-time exchange and collaboration. And never forget the most important part: the human element of connection, trust, and humour that forms the basis for meaningful dialogue.

I love designing this kind of new gathering together with partners as top-notch as Media Apparat PHQ GmbH who know how to turn gatherings into emotional happenings.

Last week we got to do this for Austria Center Vienna which is not only known as the biggest conference location in Austria but has also transformed itself into the biggest testing and vaccination street in the country, having vaccinated 1.2 million Austrians so far, as their director Susanne Baumann-Söllner told us in her opening remarks. Myself having been one of them, I still remember a moment of awe when I went there to get my shot and could feel an aura of „we are in this together“ in the face of every paramedic or worker in this huge infrastructure.

Now the Austria Center Vienna invited their online and an on-site audience for an expert talk into a 360° hybrid circle to look back at the past 1 1/2 years. Richard Gauss, one of the inventors of „Alles gurgelt“ from the City of Vienna, and company spokeswoman of Pfizer, Renée Gallo-Daniel shared their ups and downs as frontrunners during the pandemic. Summing up, what worked best were those moves where institutions, companies - or simply people - managed to work together. Hence, what we need now and with regards to future threats (like a possible Influenza pandemic coming up next), is to continue just that: common efforts.

First and foremost, to make sure we get enough people vaccinated. As one of the main drivers to get jabbed or not, according to the speakers, is still our peers. But the vaccination is a divisive issue - as it was for Gauss and his 70+ relative who opposed it. In the end, he was stubborn enough to convince her. The day after our talk they were to finally meet again after a long time - for a „reconciliation meet-up“. Coming back together after the one topic had brought them apart that - actually - should unite us in the end.

Pics by H.Tremmel, leadersnet

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