time is money when optimizing revenue

“Time is on Your Side” to baby boomers is a famous song title and lyric by the Rolling Stones. It also should be the rallying cry of today’s Revenue Manager.

Ten years ago I had just taken the “revenue reins” at a new hotel and was getting to know everyone. Beginning days are often filled with pleasant hellos and polite conversations and I stayed the course! The Director of Sales at some point moseyed into my office and I could see right away that he was very excited to show me something.

After some small talk Juan took out his “reservation control report”. With great pride he showed me a sold out Saturday that was 2 months away that he explained, happened primarily because of a group he brought in for this one night.

It was a proud moment for him. It was an eye opening event for me! I simply didn’t have the heart to tell him. But I knew at some point I would have to pick that moment carefully and discuss TIME and REVENUE STRATEGY with him in a positive way.

With 50+ and 40+ units left to sell on the Thursday and Friday immediately preceding that sold out date and 60+ on the Sunday following (Exhibit “A”)….. it was as close to a revenue management catastrophe as you could get!

In that 2 month lead-in TIME we could have managed our “unsold unit parity” from that Wednesday through Saturday and more than likely filled 3 nights and moved the mark on that Wednesday as well.. That result, of course, would have been that we better maximize our revenues and profitability.

optimizing revenue units left to sell

In managing revenues when time is plentiful and before assured sell out dates that “TIME” is the equivalent of money in the bank. Those precious minutes, hours, days and weeks before sell-out dates must be guarded and “SPENT” with great care. “Over spending” in advance often equates to wasted opportunities, deficient optimization and “money left on the table”.

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