The New York Times
New Rules Summit

CHALLENGE

Create an inclusive and intimate experience for decision-makers from a myriad of organizations to discuss equitable cultures that empower women to succeed.

It came at a time when leaders were reevaluating gender dynamics, and was designed to advance the conversation with powerful influencers, in discussions with top Times journalists, as they explore and debate key issues.

It was important for FIRST to design a stage that put the speakers in the spotlight and gave them an opportunity to connect with the audience and have the biggest impact.

APPROACH

The New Rules Summit: Women, Leadership and a Playbook for Change was a thought leadership event meant to bring together powerful leaders from across industries. This conference was built on a year of the Times’s Pulitzer Prize-winning reporting on gender and the workplace – and took the discussion into the realm of real solutions.

Held at the 1Hotel Brooklyn Bridge, FIRST designed scenic and environmental elements to complement the unique style of the 1Hotel and allowed guests to feel engaged and a part of the discussion.

SOLUTION

Through creative experience design and thoughtful planning, FIRST produced a space that encouraged a sense of connection between guests and the Summit’s panel discussions, keynotes, and breakout sessions.

To make the room feel inclusive and cohesive, FIRST designed a stage set fit for the aesthetics of the 1Hotel, while bringing content to the audience in a non-disruptive fashion. The dark wooden structure consisted of (7) 46-inch screens and (3) 80-inch screens on each side, allowing for content to span past the stage length. The screens worked well for the video reels to shine in between speakers, while having a backdrop that blended into the environment for the sessions.

Guest speakers featured Melinda Gates, America Ferrera, Jamie Dimon, Cecile Richards, and Prime Minister of NZ Jacinda Ardern, who spoke candidly about women in the workplace.

Smaller workshops were created to extend the speaker sessions into smaller groups so guests could partake in the conversation and network with each other on topics they found interesting.

The iconic Fearless Girl statue was brought in for guests to strike a power pose in a unique photo-op. The statue is a NYC staple for women in the workplace, standing proudly in New York’s financial district.

HIGHLIGHTS

During the afternoon sessions, the world outside of the conference was watching the Brett Kavanaugh Hearings live. Our ability to be nimble and connect the dots kicked in. What was going on in the world brought another weight of meaning to this conference. With that, we provided broadcast solutions to bring the live feed of the Kavanaugh hearings to the pre-function space TV screens, and created an intimate circle for guests, speakers, and interviewers to watch all together.

You could feel the power in the room, watching alongside leaders such as Katie Couric, Tina Tchen, and Cecile Richards. The engagement rose as speakers spoke directly to audience members asking for real-time updates. The New York Times staff live-reported the historic moment, and guests were able to feel a part of a unique experience that only those in the room could experience.

RESULTS

A 9-Page article featured in a special section of The New York Times newspaper

Over 100,000 livestream views on Facebook and Twitter (The highest number of The New York Times streams for one event)

Runner up in Event Marketer’s Hidden Gems Award for Best VIP Event (Under 1,000 Attendees)