COVID-19’s impacts on society are unprecedented and nobody can say precisely when we will return to normal public life.
Experts predict that COVID-19 will cut US$12 billion out of the entertainment industry in the United States alone. Global entertainment giant Cirque du Soleil shut down 44 shows worldwide and will not reopen until January 2021.
If public safety is still at risk in the summer, global concert promoters like Evenko, AEG or Live Nation will be at risk of losing the important summer concert season.
Juggling immediate impact
In response to public health directives, live event and entertainment companies have focused on public safety, protecting employees and flattening the curve. As a result, they are now left coping with the immediate impact of not having “bums in seats” to pay for their operations’ fixed and sunk costs.
The live events and entertainment industry has survived increased security measures after 9/11, weak demand from SARS and re-schedulings due to fire or weather, but it has never globally closed down. It may be recession-resilient, but it is not shutdown-proof.
During times of uncertainty, managers often juggle an infinite number of issues, multiple stakeholder needs and an unpredictable range of outcomes.
When leading through uncertain times, it is critical that managers avoid the urge to throw up their hands and act purely on instinct…
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