Eric de Groot, launched ‘Meetings, by Default or by Design’ at Warwick Conferences

A new book, which seeks to highlight the power of face-to-face meetings following the pandemic, has launched as part of an event in Coventry.

Meeting design pioneer, Eric de Groot, launched ‘Meetings, by Default or by Design’ at Warwick Conferences at the University of Warwick during a familiarisation trip in the city organised by Conference Coventry and Warwickshire for the UK meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions industry.

It marked the UK launch for the book, which provides advice and guidance to meeting organisers on how to deliver effective face-to-face events in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

‘Meetings by Default or By Design’ is de Groot’s second major publication, following the successful ‘Into the Heart of Meetings’ in 2013, which has been referred to as the bible of the changing meeting industry.

The author led an interactive session where he highlighted key themes from the new workbook with attendees and discussed suggested improvements for delivery of face-to-face and hybrid meetings.

Paul Bartlett, Director of Warwick Conferences, said: “It was a privilege to have been offered the opportunity to host Eric’s book launch, particularly as the subject is one close to our hearts. After an understandably cautious re-introduction, we have been delighted to see face-to-face meetings rise to the top of many event organisers’ agendas, however, the meeting itself must be valuable to attendees.

“As discussed in Eric’s book, team building and learning and development work best when they’re organised in person. As a business, we have always been focused on creating memorable experiences – whether that’s for a book launch or a corporate away day – and Eric has inspired us to carry on our philosophy.”

The three-day familiarisation trip saw delegates visit venues around the region. It included visits to Ashorne Hill, Coombe Abbey Hotel, the British Motor Museum, Heart of England Conference and Events Centre, and around Coventry city centre, with visits to Coventry Cathedral, Herbert Art Gallery & Museum to see Dippy, and St Mary’s Guildhall.

The weekend also included a visit to Coventry Building Society Arena to see Coventry City play, as well as a poker masterclass at its onsite Grosvenor Casino.

Conference Coventry & Warwickshire is part of destination management organisation (DMO) Destination Coventry.

Claire England, Senior Destination Manager at Destination Coventry, said: “It was a pleasure to welcome delegates from across the UK to Coventry to see everything our conference, meetings and exhibitions sector has to offer.

“We are thriving as a destination for meetings and events. Eric is a pioneer in the meetings industry and it is testament to the strength of our area that he chose Coventry and Warwickshire as the region to launch this new book.”