What is the business protocol in times of social distancing?


The times we go through are very challenging for those who are responsible for organizing events in your company.


Until the pandemic passes or allows us to live without the present movement limitation, there are many questions we have to ask before deciding to start organizing an event.


What protocol should they follow? Will virtual events have a protocol? Should we follow the same rules as face-to-face events or do they apply differently?


Virtual events, for example, require creativity and, at the same time, a lot of common sense. Initiatives such as Webinars and videoconferencing have become part of the new routine, but companies now need to reach their audiences through other types of events.

Events that create proximity. That conveys prestige, innovation, and goals. Event industry experts have been able over the past few months to invent and organize high-quality, protocol-free virtual events.


But some entrepreneurs consider the cost too high and most are not satisfied that the same memorable effect of face-to-face events is not achieved.


Mixed events have now emerged with fewer guests present, but with the possibility of reaching thousands of participants online, in case it is a topic of interest to a wide audience.


The bet has to be on speakers and exclusive content. Those who are invited to participate, even from a distance, have to feel that the event is special and that it’s worth being an hour or more in front of the screen listening to someone who will share the knowledge that can be useful to them.

When choosing the event the company will organize, while the pandemic lasts, the person in charge should take into account several aspects of security and public health.


Some examples include open spaces instead of closed ones; smaller events in larger spaces; with a strict hygienic cleaning of these spaces and their participants; appropriate electronic reception; the mandatory use of masks, at all times – which are only taken out to speak; short duration (should not exceed one hour) and delivery of offers adjusted to the hygienic rules advised by DGS.


Or, the microphones and pulpits sanitized after each intervention, with water exchange and the glass should also be changed; and, of course, who makes these replacements should use disposable gloves and a spray to inspire confidence.


To give dignity to the event, the scenario should have only what is necessary, to reinforce the message you want to convey, without distracting the spectator.


But do mixed events require the application of the protocol rules provided for in Law No. 40/2006 of August 25?


Unlike videoconferences, in mixed events, precedence rules apply to make the settlement, either on stage or in the front rows of the audience. It is necessary to widen the distance between each place, which makes it more important than ever to have a “bulletproof” protocol to be able to justify the choice of the few people in the front row.


The precedences are used to distribute the rest of the entities to the 2nd or third row. If it was already difficult in face-to-face events, where all the guests wanted to stay in the front row where only 15 people could be accommodated, now that there can only be seven people there will be more complaints.


There is always a positive aspect that we can invoke: there isn’t anyone in front of us, thus the visibility of the stage is much better…


At the presiding table, the rules of protocol alternately apply, leaving the presiding officer in the center.


The order of speeches will be protocol, starting with the host and ending with the highest entity that takes a seat at the table, and finally, in group photos, the chosen space (staircase or tribune) needs to have several lines to keep the safety distance between everyone. The plan will have to be made by the organizers observing the hierarchies among all the participants. In case high entities are present, for example, the precedences of art. 7 of Law 40/2006 are respected.


As in so many other things in our lives, in the protocol, it is always necessary to prevent, to safeguard, to organize, and to adopt sanitary etiquette that makes us all responsible.