Room Advances: Look Out For What’s Left Behind
By Christy Lamagna, CMP, CMM, CTSM, and James S. Rota
Have you heard people say they’re a right-brain or left-brain thinker? Right brainers tend to be creative and instinctual, left-brainers analytical and logical. That’s how Beauty & the Brain was born. James Rota’s creativity meshes with Christy Lamagna’s strategic thinking to bring, ideally, a well-rounded approach to events and what to look for during room advances.
From the Brain
Room advances are common among planners who want to ensure that VIP rooms are in perfect condition. What’s less common is a post-checkout sweep, to make sure nothing is left behind. We often find random things someone forgot to take home. Here are some of our most memorable. iPads. I can’t imagine someone leaving their iPad behind, but it happens more than you may think. We find them in the top drawer of a desk or under a bed. (We always return them.)
Peeking under a bed often reveals stray socks, a single shoe and the occasional M&M. The single shoe thing always makes me wonder.
We always check magazine stacks because occasionally someone leaves a favorite publication behind. Sometimes it’s a cooking magazine. Other times the “flavor” is much spicier! We’re especially thankful we find these before an executive arrives with his or her family.
In bathrooms, we find personal hair dryers or cosmetics tucked into vanity drawers. I still lament leaving behind my own favorite lipstick while packing up too quickly.
I often think about the wisdom of a post-event room check to make sure guests don’t leave anything behind, but it can be a privacy issue. I’ve always elected to resist the urge and cross my fingers that the person doing the future room advances doesn’t find anything worth writing about!
From the Beauty
Many hotels have opted out of mini-bars in rooms, but for some guests, this refrigerated unit becomes a place to store personal items. We all enjoy a cold beverage or snack. We pick them up locally to help with our T&E and stash them in the mini-bar for safekeeping. With early arrivals or a rush check-in for a VIP, attendants don’t have time to check or refresh the mini-bar. Even if refrigerated, someone else’s leftovers are unwelcome.
Check the safe. Small items are often left behind because they’ve been pushed to the back of this dark compartment or fallen under the lip of the door. I’ve seen my share of “valuables” left behind, and I use that term loosely.
Finally, check the desk area. Power cords and chargers plugged into the wall are easy to forget because they look like wiring provided by the hotel. Arm yourself with a comprehensive room advances checklist, you can canvas a room in no time. Besides, who knows what cool stuff you’ll find along the way!
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve found? Share your story in our comments section and/or by emailing Christy.Lamagna@strategic.events
Tags: Room Advances: Look Out For What’s Left Behind, Room Advance, Meetings, Events, Event Planning, Event Planners, Strategic Planners, Strategic Events, Plan Your Meetings