Tag Archives: services

Look – up in the sky – it’s a blimp!

How did you travel on your last vacation? Probably via car or airplane. Are you ready for another way to travel? Then perhaps it’s time to consider blimps. We’re used to seeing blimps in the air as floating billboards used to advertise brands (Ex: Goodyear Blimp). But, blimps – also known as airships – have more utility than just advertising. Several companies are now exploring the use of airships for passenger travel and other uses.

Marketing passenger travel by airship will be tricky though. Airships have a negative stigma attached, and have not been used for passenger travel since 1937 after 36 people died when the Hindenburg airship burst into flames shortly before landing. It was a horrific event that still lives on in memory.

Today’s airships promise to be quite different though. They have the ability to fly for days using helium to stay aloft and can takeoff and land without a runway. Airships are also more environmentally sustainable with fewer carbon emissions than airplanes, plus the interiors are spacious and quiet.

Several companies are exploring new technologies and use of airships. One of those, OceanSky Cruises, compares the travel to that of a cruise ship, but must faster. The airship is 320-feet long with guest cabins, restaurant, and bar. Since it flies at lower altitudes than airplanes, it boasts floor-to-ceiling windows for viewing the landscape. A North Pole voyage is planned for 2024 – at a price tag of $232,845 for a two-person cabin!

How would you like to travel by airship?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Start by discussing current ways to travel. What are negatives and positives of each mode?
  2. View OceanSky’s website: https://www.oceanskycruises.com/
  3. A video of the new airship can be seen at: https://youtu.be/QuM-gFJRhlY
  4. If students are not familiar with the Hindenburg disaster, show a video of the event: https://youtu.be/A7Ly1Oh-xvs
  5. Divide students into teams: Have each team identify the constraints that might keep people from using airships.
  6. What adjustments are needed in marketing airship travel versus airplane travel?
  7. Have each team develop a marketing campaign for the new flights.

Source:  New York Times

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Coming Soon to a CVS Store Near You – Therapy Sessions

Feeling stressed or down lately? Sorry to say this, but you are not alone. There is no doubt that the past year has had a strong impact on our mental health as people deal with new issues stemming from the pandemic. Many people find benefits from therapy during those times, but it might not always be easy to find a therapist and schedule times to visit.

To help people deal with these issues, CVS is now offering counseling services in or near select stores in Florida, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Texas. At these locations, CVS now staffs a licensed clinical social worker trained in cognitive behavior therapy. To address privacy issues, CVS says customers would have no way to know that someone is getting counseling (as opposed to other clinic services) in private rooms. An initial assessment with the therapist costs $129, while a 30-minute counseling session costs $69. Treatment would not be a substitute for long-term care, and would instead be used for issues that could be worked on in five or six sessions.

While at first glance CVS’s move might seem a stretch, it is also another way for retail pharmacies to offer additional health care services to customers, and in a place that they regularly shop at. CVS is being joined in these new therapy service offerings by rivals Walgreens and Walmart.

Social workers think that offering counselling in places consumers already visit will be a good draw, particularly for people in lower-income areas, or who lack health insurance.

Some days, we all need a little extra help.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the environmental factors that have led to new therapy service offerings.
  2. How have these factors led to new services?
  3. Show video of athletes discussing mental health: https://www.wsj.com/video/how-athlete-candor-on-mental-health-is-changing-the-game/8F51F296-46AD-423D-9B9F-C24E4DF6D7AD.html
  4. Ask students their opinions on the topic of mental health services as part of a whole care strategy.
  5. Show CVS website for mental health services: https://www.cvs.com/content/health-hub/mental-health-counseling
  6. Brief video of the services: https://youtu.be/3ZJcy8W3d0A
  7. Divide students into teams. Have each team develop a SWOT analysis for CVS that includes recent environmental trends.

Source:  Wall Street Journal; NPR; other news sources

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The Future of Parking Garages

When is the last time you left your car in a public parking garage? It may sound a little crazy to ask this, but what was your experience? Most likely, it just was parking and nothing else. Nothing special. Boring. Repetitive. Unattractive. Expensive. Time consuming.

Now, think of the potential business opportunity to give those car owners something else to enjoy – and spend money on – in addition to keeping their cars safely tended. The parking garage could actually become a ‘mobility hub’ or a ‘silo’ that could provide restful parking for delivery drivers who might need restrooms and food. After all, those large concrete buildings are usually in valuable real estate located next to destinations such as entertainment, shopping, and events venues.

Innovation is now coming to parking garages. In Chicago, an underground parking garage downtown is being converted to an e-commerce delivery center. Los Angeles parking garages house shared commercial kitchens. Denver and Seattle parking garage roofs are being used as urban greenhouses and farms. San Francisco is redeveloping a garage into a mixed-use complex with affordable housing. Other garages are using parking spots for autonomous vehicles and EV charging stations, adding integrated access controls, kiosks, valet parking, and more, all synced through mobile devices.

Technology plays a large role in the future of parking garages. High-tech cameras can read license plates, enabling drivers to buy passes online and bypass ticket taking and payments, reserving a parking spot in advance. Some garages work with car-sharing companies, bikes, food trucks, and scooters to help patrons quickly access transportation. Others are considering how to combine workspace, retail, fitness centers, and housing using pre-fabricated modules.

What would you like to see in a parking garage?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What has been their experiences with parking garages? What is negative? What could be done to improve parking garages?
  2. View FlashPark website: https://www.flashparking.com/products/
  3. Show video – why parking lots will disappear: https://youtu.be/XMt4zEEHxv4
  4. Discuss the impact of ride-sharing services and autonomous vehicles on parking garages.
  5. Divide students into teams. Have each team select a parking garage in the area.
  6. Research the garage, number of spots, footprint, revenue, usage.
  7. Have each team redesign the garage to be more innovative and useful.
  8. Debrief the exercise and select a winning design.

Source:  Axios; New York Times; Wall Street Journal; other news sources

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