Have you noticed a difference in your behavior when you
travel for business vs. when you travel for pleasure? Sure, you’re more relaxed when you travel for
pleasure, but is that relaxed attitude enough to overcome weeks and weeks of
business related hotel stays? Let’s
consider an example. Suppose they give
you a room with a balcony that overlooks the pool. The view of the pool represents a much better
view than that of the parking lot, so you happily accept the room. The first night, however, you are saddened to
learn that the water pump crucial to the nightly cleaning of the pool makes a
horrible whining sound that keeps you from sleeping. What do you do?
If your stay is business related, it’s easy to adopt a
business related attitude about the event.
I know from experience that the more you travel for business, the more
you tend to think that everyone around you must be traveling for business,
too. You checked in with a business
rate, you have access to the business lounge, you go to work every day, you’re
paying for the internet access so you can work from your room, etc. You’re used to the people around you being
professional, efficient, quick to act, etc.
It’s easy to pick up the phone and to “demand” some sort of
accommodation. “Can you shut off that
ridiculous pump?” “You better send
someone up here immediately to gather my things and move me to another room… A suite!”
How would you handle the same situation if you were vacationing with
your family and the same thing happened?
How’s your mindset now? I’ll bet
you would be much more likely to handle the situation with more patience and
The truth is, we all need someone to kick us under the
proverbial table once in awhile when we’re on business travel. Goodness knows, when my wife comes along with
me on the occasional trip, it doesn’t take long to realize how my attitude
changes. “Honey, I know I wasn’t next in
line, but nobody is using this particular machine for check-in, and its ‘dog
eat dog’ around here so…”
Relax. When it
comes travel, it doesn’t matter whether you’re on a business trip or a
vacation, the best way to soothe the bees is with a lot of honey. This is particularly true when staying in a
hotel. Regardless of your experience on
a plane or at the airport, your time in the airport is OVER relatively
quickly. No matter how bad a particular
situation is, it’s likely to be resolved relatively quickly. Your stay in the hotel will last for several
days, or maybe even a couple of weeks.
Doesn’t it make sense to make every effort to make as many friends in
hotels as possible?
Smile at the maid, shake hands with the Valet and tell
him he did a great job, make an effort to find the manager, and to introduce
yourself to them. I could list ten
different hotels around the country where I could literally email the manager,
tell them I’m coming next week or whatever, and they’d instantly upgrade my
room at no charge. Share a joke with the
omelet maker at breakfast, and see if they don’t remember your order the next
day. Berate them just once for making a
mistake, however, and you’ll be lucky to ever get good service again.
you have questions for Ken regarding business travel, hotels, airplanes, etc,
please call 1-877-49-EXPERT. Your
questions will be recorded and sent to him.
You can also follow Ken on Twitter @foodbreeze!