Meeting and Event Spaces of the Future

Meeting and Event Spaces of the Future

What will meeting and event spaces of the future look like? As the industry changes rapidly, let’s examine emerging trends.

The IACC Meeting Room of the Future Report™ brings together insights from meeting planners and industry experts from around the globe. Those surveyed have identified key trends that will be required in the meeting and event spaces of the future.

The report highlights the following as having the greatest impact on the attendee experience at meeting and event spaces, including conferences and trade shows:

  • Availability of high-quality internet
  • Lighting
  • Acoustics
  • Social and networking spaces outside the meeting room for informal gatherings
  • Flexibility to change meeting room layouts during the day
  • Venues that offer ethical operations and sustainable practices
  • Different meeting space environments today than five years ago
  • Use of outdoor areas in meetings

As always, meeting planners are expected to do more with less. While budgets haven’t increased, demands for unique experiences, advanced technology, and enhanced food and beverage offerings are at an all-time high. In addition, virtual and hybrid events are increasingly becoming the norm, and organizations need to shift their strategies to accommodate evolving audience needs and expectations.

Ideal Venue Characteristics

In describing the physical characteristics of their ideal meeting venue, meeting professionals surveyed in the report used the following words most frequently:

  • Open
  • Flexible
  • Bright
  • Fun
  • Well-equipped with technology

Flexibility, fun, and the right technologies are key to planners’ ability to create memorable experiences.

Optimizing Every Inch of Meeting and Event Spaces

In the report, meeting planners can work with their audiovisual production partner to bring in portable technologies to supplement or compensate for poor lighting, problematic video, room layout issues, and insufficient Wi-Fi. Fixing poor acoustics, however, is much more difficult. Background noise, echoes and reverberation, and insufficient isolation from neighboring spaces can negatively affect meeting room acoustics. Where possible, good acoustics should be baked into the room and system design, which is one of many reasons why venue selection is critically important.

With regard to room types, planners prefer meeting rooms that offer a more flexible layout or lounge-style informal seating vs. auditorium and tiered lecture room seating. They also prefer spaces that help them facilitate the sharing of education and experience in an organic way. In addition, they are seeking comfortable social spaces outside the meeting room where attendees can engage in a meaningful way both during and after the event.

Meeting and Event Spaces of the Future

In 2020 and beyond, meeting and event spaces will need to be designed with intention to increase attendee engagement, productivity, safety, and comfort. They will need to deliver high-impact, memorable experiences, regardless whether those events are live, virtual, or hybrid. Those same spaces will need to help planners and their clients achieve a strong return on investment.

Want to learn more about the Meeting Room of the Future? You can read the entire IACC Meeting Room of the Future Report here.

About Total Show Technology

TST is the total show production solution for anyone who hosts, plans, manages, or produces live, virtual, or hybrid conferences, meetings, trade shows, and nightclub live events. We own the Pacific Southwest market and travel with our clients all across the country. Our clients have relied on us to deliver audio, video, lighting, rentals, and show production since 1996.

Whether you’re looking for audio visual support or advanced event technologies, we help your shows go off without a hitch and always make you look good. In an industry where almost anything can go wrong, we make sure everything goes right. Let’s have a conversation! Call us at 702-897-8508 or visit

Rich Cornish