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May 20, 2009

Sarah Farrugia:Why you need to get out more

If ever there was any doubt about the human and business need for meetings and events, then the head of Sarah Farrugia & Co clearly argues the case for interaction and engagement on a personal, face-to-face level – Your Honour…

The music industry has once again embraced the live experience as the new way to make money after fundamental changes in its business model took hold.

Other brands, such as Starbucks, have used experiences in their cafés to keep themselves ahead of the competition.

Prada, the luxury fashion label, has just opened a nightclub, The Double Club, heralding the ‘Prada moment’.

O2 and Red Bull have successfully built their brands on experiences, such as the Dome – now called the O2 – and Flugtags.

It is increasingly clear that we will pay for experiences even when we are cutting back on most other things.

Experiences feel special, they feel they are ours alone and they give us pleasure.

For people who don't want to be too extreme, a concert, a flying event, an exhibition or an art installation is a safe – and yet a challenging, pleasurable way to spend a day.

The experience business is there to give pleasure. Even so there are many people, both in their personal lives and in their professional lives, who don't invest in experiences, who feel they are a waste with nothing to show for them.

There are people who focus on the queues, the traffic, the poor catering, the crowding to prove why experiences are a waste of time.

Many of these people think life itself is a bit of a drag, many are tired by the pace and speed of the way we live, many feel the world is a difficult place.

Often people who avoid taking risks with their time, want a high level of order and control and are willing to pay the price with dull and unexciting lives.

While it is wrong to judge, it is also wrong to ignore.

As we increasingly find it difficult to balance our books at home, at work and in the country as a whole, it will be easy to settle for the Sky TV way of living, a Wii kind of day or the Daily Mail version of real life.

Any live activity from a walk in the park, to a day at the Boat Show to a night with Beyoncé brings positive wellbeing.

It literally makes you feel better.

The activities don't have to be high profile, they can be local or fringe; they don't actually have to be 'wow' events provided you go with the right attitude.

Life is for living, which means activity with real people and at real-life events.

These extraordinary days give more people opportunities and access to information and experiences than ever before.

Happy people live in safe and progressive societies enjoying a diversity of interests and activities. Far from cutting back on experiences in these dark economic days, we can embrace them as a core part of our daily life, both privately and professionally.

As they say: “You should get out more.”

Sarah Farrugia heads up events agency Sarah Farrugia & Co

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