|This brings to mind an image of a management meeting where some topsider says, "Can we come up with an outrageous policy that will upset the employees, invade their privacy, and maybe get us sued?" After a moment of silence, one manager in the back of the room jumps up and says, "I've got it! Coed rooms on business trips!" With resounding cheers and backslapping, the meeting adjourns.|
As to whether it is proper etiquette to expect the employees to share coed rooms, the answer is "No!" In addition, it is not a proper policy, it is not proper ethics, and it is not proper management. It is not proper, period. Management needs to be advised of this fact and told that although they are interested in cutting costs, there are tremendous costs associated with this policy.
As for some guidelines in this type of business situation, there are companies that will place employees of the same sex in the same hotel rooms. However, even in this type of scenario, the employees are often given the opportunity to voice some preferences.
Just because your company is sending you to a trade show does not mean that you have to trade your privacy, values, and sense of what's right and wrong.