In the late 1990s, the seafood chain Red Lobster was one of the fastest growing restaurants in the nation as it earned billions of dollars in annual revenue from more than 700 locations. As the years went by, though, poorly planned promotions and wider economic factors took their toll on the company. This video looks at how the pandemic and an endless shrimp promotion brought Red Lobster to the brink of bankruptcy.

Questions:

  1. How did Red Lobster’s endless shrimp promotion Continue reading
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February 7, 2024

American consumers first encountered rising prices shortly after the pandemic, when supply chain problems and labor shortages sent costs soaring for all sorts of goods. Fortunately, prices have finally started to fall again for products like appliances, used cars, and gasoline as well as services like health insurance. Still, inflation has not decreased evenly across the board, and the prices for some goods remain stubbornly high. Perhaps the clearest example of increasing costs occurs at the grocery store, where food Continue reading

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June 21, 2023

The Instant Pot first hit the market in 2010 and quickly gained a following of dedicated users who took every opportunity to praise the pot’s pressure cooking and slow cooking abilities. Sales climbed throughout the decade as word-of-mouth spread, and then the Instant Pot truly became a blockbuster during the pandemic. Sales of multicookers and air fryers doubled in 2020 as millions of homebound people searched for ways to make easy meals in their kitchens. 

Customers certainly got what Continue reading

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March 30, 2023

The video below takes a long look at Li-Lac Chocolate, the oldest chocolate house in New York that thrives by doing things the old fashioned way. Along with observing their unique production processes, this video examines how Li-Lac made it through the pandemic to continue its century-long tradition.

  1. What value do the antique chocolate molds owned by Li-Lac Chocolates give to the company?
  2. How did the pandemic affect business at Li-Lac Chocolate?
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January 25, 2023

When Bethany Lane moved to New York City after graduating from college, she immediately looked for ways to make money in her expensive new home. “I had to pay my rent and student loans, so I went on Craigslist,” she said. “I saw that somebody would pay me to walk dogs. As an animal lover who is obsessed with dogs, it was perfect.” The job worked out so well that by 2014 Lane founded Whistle & Wag, a boutique pet Continue reading

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August 26, 2022

Global supply chains have been all out of sorts since the start of the pandemic, but for the most part traffic and delays have been isolated to ports on the Pacific. As the video below explains, though, bottlenecks have now moved to East and Gulf Coast ports that are unprepared for this influx of ships and container boxes. 

Questions:

  1. What are some reasons why shipping traffic and delays have moved from Pacific ports to East and Gulf Coast ports? Continue reading
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July 12, 2022

Since the start of the summer travel season, air carriers have canceled thousands of flights as they grapple with bad weather, high fuel costs, and rampant inflation. Along with these problems, airlines are also encountering increased resistance from one of their most important groups of employees: pilots. Faced with large workloads and an unpredictable post-pandemic environment, pilots are demanding substantial wage increases as well as quality of life benefits from their employers. 

According to analysts, airlines are likely to Continue reading

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Although the pandemic ushered in a new era of working from home, many companies still want employees to come into the office. This video looks at how the social network LinkedIn redesigned its workplace to include more than 75 different types of seating, combining the comforts of home with the collaborative nature of the office environment. 

Questions:

  1. What are the benefits and drawbacks of LinkedIn’s new hybrid office plan?
  2. Do you think more companies should follow LinkedIn’s lead and Continue reading
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June 22, 2022

Americans traveled in droves over the busy Father’s Day and Juneteenth holiday weekend, leading to widespread delays and cancellations at airports despite the best efforts of carriers. All told, airlines canceled more than 5,000 flights over the weekend while almost a third of all arriving flights on Friday were delayed. Travelers experienced similar moments of chaos at airports over Memorial Day weekend, reflecting an industry struggling to return to normal after the pandemic.

According to airlines, poor weather and high Continue reading

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Fuel costs continued to climb last week, reaching a national average of $4.59 per gallon. According to AAA, this represents a 50 percent increase from last year when many drivers chose to stay at home rather than travel the country on road trips. That won’t be the case this year, however, even as gas prices rise to their highest levels since 2008. Many Americans who have spent the past two years stuck in the same place are looking to hit Continue reading

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