Agencies discuss mental health and stress in events

With mental health and stress increasingly being discussed in the events industry, agencies spoke to C&IT about their experiences.

Mental health and stress concerns are slowly gaining more recognition across several industries, but why is the events world in particular starting to react? Event coordination has been cited as the fifth most stressful job, and an Eventwell survey revealed that one in three event professionals will suffer from mental health problems.

How important an issue is mental health and stress within the events industry?

Holly Moore, director of Make Events said: "The reason that people are highlighting it within this industry is because the hours are notoriously long. Sleep and the ability to exercise can be affected and often you are away from home.

"Your eating patterns are disturbed and you are often eating unhealthy food and drinking when entertaining clients."

Although these factors affect many industries, the pressures for the events industry are unique because, according to Nel Flint, director of operations, Capita Travel and Events "stresses can be concentrated to particular peak months, or individual events, when the event manager’s downtime can be quite limited."

But on-site challenges are only the tip of the iceberg says Russ Lidstone, CEO of WRG, as the demands of clients and other factors around the event itself come into play.

He said: "We are dealing with content that is of huge importance to clients, in addition to unsociable hours, challenging times and environments, travelling, and situations where staff are not necessarily able to look after themselves on site.

"Added to this are the commercial challenges and the growing role of events in marketing, so there is now a lot more focus and scrutiny on what we do."

Having to keep up with the constant and unpredictable demands of being on-site can take its toll, he says, adding: "It’s not the kind of job where you can predict anything. Every event is different and you have to on alert at all times with plan B and your game face.

"So you are constantly in a form of stress - even for someone that would not necessarily be prone to mental health issues these factors might escalate."

Mandy Chase, HR manager at Wildgoose emphasised a recognition that "people are people and they will have issues".

She said: "The business has a duty of care to its staff, particularly as they work very long hours in the busiest periods. Stress in the workplace has become a big issue in recent years as staff are signed off more for issues such as anxiety."

Read part two, where agencies discuss what they are doing to tackle stress and mental health concerns.


For more breaking news and in-depth features, sign up to C&IT's daily News Tracker here.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in
Seven Events welcomes two new faces

Seven Events welcomes two new faces

Agency brings in client development manager and event executive to London and Birmingham offices.

The diversity debate is about more than gender

The diversity debate is about more than gender

The industry faces challenges representing people from low income backgrounds, argues TCEG's Russ Lidstone.

The growing importance of face-to-face marketing

The growing importance of face-to-face marketing

Keith Austin, CEO and founder of Event Marketing Solutions, believes roadshows are more important than ever.

Cost savings are damaging to business traveller wellbeing, report finds

Cost savings are damaging to business traveller wellbeing, report finds

Research by Capita Travel & Events suggests many organisations are still failing to limit the impact of regular travel on employee health.

How to get the most out of your keynote speakers

How to get the most out of your keynote speakers

From pre-event videos to research papers, keynotes can provide all kinds of content, says DMA Partners' Philip Martin.

What to expect at IMEX America

What to expect at IMEX America

A sneak preview before the events world descends on the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas from 10-12 September.

Brisbane to host international ear, nose and throat congress

Brisbane to host international ear, nose and throat congress

The Asia Oceania ORL-HNS Congress will return to Australia for the first time in 40 years, attracting 1,500 clinicians and surgeons.

ILEA gets new president and board

ILEA gets new president and board

The International Live Events Association welcomes a new leadership team and sets out goals for 2019-20.

5 questions every venue-booker must ask

5 questions every venue-booker must ask

Founder and CEO of ExecSpace shares the questions you should ask before committing to a venue for your event.

Switzerland and the best hotels of Bern

Switzerland and the best hotels of Bern

The Swiss city of Bern and its wider province have some beautiful places to unwind after a day of meetings.

LATEST JOBS