Past Issues/Subscribe | Printer-Friendly | Advertise | Send to a Friend | | Engage Archive December 2014
In This Issue
Galveston Island CVB
By KC Hopson, Owner, Event Rebels 

Go directly to your hotel room. Do not stop at the front desk, do not collect your key card. This Monopoly-inspired scenario isn’t too far off for many hotel guests. Several major hotel brands have announced plans to install keyless entry systems that can be unlocked directly from a guest’s mobile phone. With keyless entry and mobile check-in, hotel guests will have no need to wait in line at the front desk upon arrival. Many in the hotel industry are hoping that this streamlined process will appeal to increasingly tech-savvy travelers.

In January, Starwood Hotels & Resorts announced they would debut keyless entry starting in a few of their Aloft brand hotels. Then, in July, Hilton Worldwide issued a press release detailing a new digital plan focused on giving guests the ability to manage their entire stay. In addition to checking in and out on their own, guests at over 4,000 Hilton Worldwide properties will soon be able to select their room in advance and unlock the door from their smartphone when they arrive.

Hotels are not the only ones hoping to implement this technology, HotelTonight, the hotel booking app, has partnered with Brivo Labs to add keyless entry to their app. At Google’s I/O conference in June, HotelTonight reported that they are in talks with hotel chains to implement the necessary door hardware.

Although keyless entry is relatively new in the hotel industry, keyless "smart locks," are already available for private use. Many locks use either Bluetooth or NFC technology to communicate with your smartphone and verify a digital key. Some locks may require you to tap a button or pass the phone over the lock, while others can recognize your phone as you approach and unlock the door automatically.

Hotels may be slow to implement the new technology due to the cost of retrofitting, such a large number of doors. Many hotel properties are franchises, where the cost of the upgrade would be the responsibility of the independent owner. Both Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Hilton Worldwide have said they will contribute to the cost of the upgrade, but have not indicated how much they plan to cover. Starwood and Hilton have stated that they hope to have keyless entry available in properties by the end of next year.

K.C. Hopson, President of EventRebels, has been doing business with meeting planners who have need for technology solutions for more than 10 years. He frequently writes about meetings technology on his company’s blog.  K.C. is currently serving his second tour of duty on the board of PMPI.

By Shawn Pearson, Principal Consultant and Founder at Pearson & Associates 

Saying the final quarter is upon us would be an understatement. Not only is it upon us, it’s happening right now. We are just days away from a new year. With Thanksgiving, Christmas, holiday functions, departmental goals and revenue goals, it’s easy to lose your bearings.

It’s during this season that your stress level increases 10 times over. Keeping a level head by finding ways to minimize stress is vital to having a successful final quarter. Here are just a few steps that can be taken that will help get through the next few weeks:

Audit. Review your professional and departmental goals. Its bonus season and you want to ensure you have made good on your deliverables.

Follow up on prospects. Make you final push to obtain additional revenue. Being mindful of your schedule, pencil in a few calls a day. Send e-blasts and check in on your prospects from early in the year.

Mail holiday cards. Ideally your holiday cards can be mailed any time after Thanksgiving, but no later than the second week in December.

RSVP. Double check your calendar prior to saying yes to an invite. You are sure to receive countless invitations for holiday events. Be careful not to over commit.

Extend an invitation. Invite your client to accompany you to a holiday event. This is a great opportunity to build your relationship. (Be sure to check with your event host, so she knows you have a plus one).

Plan your wardrobe. Wear dress attire that can easily go from day to night. Save yourself the hassle of running home to change.  

Be a team player. Now is the perfect time to put your team player skills to use. Your colleagues are as equally stressed as you, helping out whenever possible is sure to be a win win for all.  

Enjoy family and friends. Catch up with family and friends over the holiday season. Meet a friend for coffee, schedule movie night, or sit down and share old memories. Whatever you do make time to enjoy the ones you love.

Shawn is a professional meeting planner and motivational speaker. She is the owner of Pearson & Associates a full-service event planning firm. She is passionate about serving others through her work. "After all the work is done, I love seeing the finished product. Witnessing how everything comes together motivates me to turn around and do it all over again."

Irving Convention & Visitors Bureau
The Westin Peachtree Plaza
University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education
Howard County Tourism and Promotion
Space Needle
Visit Phoenix
AMA Executive Conference Centers


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