During the Pandemic, Jeans Lose Their Cool

During the Pandemic, Jeans Lose Their Cool

 

Consumers’ on-and-off love affair with jeans has suffered a new setback during this pandemic.

Work from home as well as expanding waistlines have boosted the appeal of gym shorts, joggers, and sweatpants. A little over a year ago, Levi’s was betting on a new strategy and injection of capital to revive its fading image. Today, it finds itself in a dire situation after sales plummeted during the second quarter. Should jeans companies reinvent the iconic wardrobe staple or diversify their product mix during a period of uncertainty?

 


Video Spotlight: Levi’s CEO Remains Optimistic


This post is based on The Washington Post article, Goodbye, Jeans. The Pandemic Is Ushering in an Era of Comfort, by A. Bhattarai, July 28, 2020, and the YouTube video, Levi’s CEO Breaks Down How the Covid-19 Affected Second-Quarter Sales, by CNBC Television, July 8, 2020. Image source: alexandre zveiger / Shutterstock.

Discussion Questions:

1.  Think about your own pairs of jeans. What are their best features? What are their worst?

Guidance: The best features are likely to revolve around durability, versatility, looks, fit, color, and style. The worst features will probably be lack of comfort (especially in the Continue reading

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Going Touchless at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport

Going Touchless at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport

July 26, 2020

Effective operations is not just about doing things right, it’s about doing the right things.  Dallas-Fort Worth Airport (DFW) has emerged as the busiest airport in the world with the recent collapse in air travel due to the coronavirus.  These unexpected conditions have required a sharp and timely pivot for long-planned capital and operating plans.

DFW has the advantage of being both the home base and major hub of one of the world’s largest air carriers, American Airlines.  In addition to the summer ramp up in flights (though still substantially off the usual activity for this time of year), airlines have implemented their own changes by relying on more hub and spoke operations requiring less overall flights routing through central hubs.

DFW is responding to the “new normal” by emphasizing sanitation measures and moving to a more self-service model in luggage check-in and boarding.  Technology is being applied to expedite these changes and simultaneously increasing efficiency (with a 20% reduction in operating costs expected).

This quick response and re-focus of competitive priorities has allowed DFW to maintain and to improve its ability to serve both airlines and wary customers.


Video Spotlight: American Airlines to Lift Continue reading

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How Do We Dine 6 Feet Apart?

How Do We Dine 6 Feet Apart?

Restaurants are planning their reopening and reinventing the dining scene.

As restaurants plan their reopening, they are learning about new safety protocols, finding out how Asian restaurants adapted, and developing new guidelines on their own. The challenges abound as restaurateurs have to create a safe and inviting environment while discarding features that used to attract diners. The reopening process will be gradual, and its success uncertain. It does not appear to be an opportunity to start from scratch but rather to build on a good reputation developed before the crisis.


Video Spotlight: Reopening Restaurants with Caution


This post is based on The New York Times article, Safe Dining? Hard to Imagine, but Many Restaurants Are Trying, by K. Severson, April 26, 2020, and the YouTube video, Reopen or Stay Closed: Georgia Restaurants Face a Hard Choice, by The Washington Post, April 27, 2020. Image source: Onoky/SuperStock.

Discussion Questions:

1. What are the challenges that restaurateurs face as they decide to reopen?

Guidance: The challenges involve modifying their operations in the face of uncertainty. They include: 1) predicting demand and determining appropriate inventory levels, 2) creating checklists for cleaning and food preparation, 3) eliminating some signature Continue reading

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