Out with the old, in with the new. That’s the motto for Room & Board’s annual floor change, which happens in January at each of our 12 stores. In one night, a showroom is torn apart, turned upside down and completely transformed to display our new collection of modern American-made furniture and accessories.
I headed over to Room & Board Edina to witness the action on one of the coldest nights of the year. To say that I was impressed is an understatement. A beautifully choreographed ballet unfolded right before my eyes.
It all began at 6 p.m. when a crew of 40 Room & Board employees gathered in the showroom. This included 33 staff from our local delivery center and seven Design Associates. They discussed the night’s plan, which was reminiscent of a pre-game huddle, mapping out a thoughtful strategy with key insights, tips and motivational words sprinkled in.
In the Twin Cities that evening, temperatures would fall to a low of 23 below zero with a wind chill that felt like 30 below (you read that right). This would mean the team would have to move quickly and take turns at the loading dock to stay not only warm, but safe.
The 45,000-square-foot showroom was divided into four sections. “Quadrant Leaders” oversaw each territory and were charged with keeping their teams on task with a clipboard in hand. Floor plans at each room’s entry indicated what would stay, what would go and how it would look when it was over. Every piece of furniture was meticulously color-coded—methodical in every sense of the word.
Outgoing furniture was wrapped with care and carried out of the showroom onto awaiting trucks, which would head to our local distribution center where Delivery Associates awaited their arrival. The team took a much-needed break a few hours into the night, enjoying pizza and salad from Pizza Luce, one of our beloved local spots. After dinner, it was time to start fresh and bring in the new. Pieces were carried in, brought to their room setting and unwrapped. The team continued to work until 2:30 a.m. when everything was in its place, and then headed home to catch some well-deserved z’s.
The showroom stood still until 7 a.m. when the store’s Visual team and a group of Design Associates came to finish the work that had been started. For many, this was the first time seeing the new collection in person—a much-anticipated moment in their design-savvy lives. While eyeing the new additions in each room, they meticulously cleaned, repositioned furniture, attached price tags and applied the finishing touches with accessories. The showroom was ready for public view at 10 a.m.—just in time for opening. See the behind-the-scenes transformation here with your own eyes:
We invite you to visit your local Room & Board showroom to explore our 2014 collection or view the new items online. Share your favorite new pieces using the hashtag #RoomBoard2014.
Photos and video by Room & Board