The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide saw the cancellation of thousands of events that caused severe global event planning challenges. As the pandemic persists, governments and corporations have found it increasingly necessary to find creative ways to host events and move forward despite Covid-19. For one event organizer, the pandemic was far from a hindrance. Michael Alf, the founder of New World Events, used this as an opportunity to pivot, taking his company to the next level.
Through his company, New World Events, Alf is adapting the skills he acquired from the numerous online and hybrid events he has organized to deliver world-class digital events for his customers.
The Beginning: Virtual Summits
Michael, who has held executive positions in Europe, Asia, and Australia during his long career, has an extensive digital background that spans many years. He recalls that as early as 2015, he began hosting Interactive Summits with thousands of people over the internet. This knowledge led him to pen the book ‘Virtual Summit Formula’, an Amazon bestseller that outlines the steps to organizing a successful virtual event.
Alf, who started his early professional life in the armed forces in Germany, spent ten years with the army before completing his MBA and moving into technology. “Early on, I was interested in technology. Even during school, I gathered my first programming experience and developed a program for my father, the director of that school. This interest in technology has been there all the way,” shared Alf.
Before deciding to venture wholly into the virtual and hybrid event planning industry, Alf mentions a few moments in his life that helped cement his decision.
The first was his decision to move to Australia in 2008. “I had a good corporate job as a Vice President in one of the largest consulting companies. And I was able to move with this company to Melbourne with my wife and two daughters. This shifted things significantly,” added Alf.
The second moment was making the difficult decision to leave his corporate career path at the end of 2011. Alf stated that “the third point where things started to shift was at the beginning of 2020. Based on my experience, I decided to focus on running digital and hybrid events for my clients. This was the point where much of my previous experience and lessons learned came together positively.” Alf used his skills from working globally, building and running remote teams, focusing on sales and customer services, and winning key stakeholders to support the business.
New World Events
Alf says the phrase, “The overnight success that took ten years,” aptly describes his business journey. Via his business, New World Events, Alf has worked with companies large and small to create eye-catching and engaging virtual and hybrid events. The company provides the required expertise and competence to produce unique online events and conferences.
Alf and his company continue to monitor the demand for emerging potential technologies in the event industry. He is an active participant in the Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality (VR/AR) space, as a member of Germany’s VR Business Club and the VR/AR Association, where he is the lead for the Community of Practice Events.