Thoughts on Black Friday Events

I heard on the news this morning that a woman actually pepper sprayed other customers during a Black Friday sale at Walmart in LA. Authorities said the woman was trying to keep others away from the merchandise she wanted to purchase. She left 20 shoppers with minor injuries from the spray. It’s nice the stores want customers to get good deals but at what costs? Missing Thanksgiving dinner and family time because they were camping out to be the first inside the door?

This was the first year that many stores, including ones in the local malls, opened their doors at 12:00 p.m. the day after Thanksgiving. This would mean that employees working that shift, would have to be there before Thanksgiving Day was even officially over. I used to work in the retail world and if I was that associate that had to come in at that time I would be pretty upset. With that shift starting at midnight I wonder what time employees had to get to sleep that afternoon in order to be prepared for the madness of the event? Wouldn’t retailers consider that this could cut into their employees family time, which that is what Thanksgiving is supposed to be all about, isn’t it?

After thinking of this, I got to thinking of all the college students that work in their college town area but are originally from hours away. How did they have to spend their Thanksgiving break? Did they even get to go home in all the madness over Black Friday? if not then I hope employers at least gave some extra incentives to work those hours or with those out of control shoppers like raises or some kind of benefits.

On a brighter note, I was happy to see the Target Black Friday commercials were back. The crazy Christmas “champ” that was in it to “win” has 12 new spots this year. I think these commercials are honest and hilarious. They do the job of allowing customers to know about the 2 day sale but also to warn them of the crazy customers, like the woman in the commercials, that might be around when they do go Black Friday shopping. You should check out the videos on youtube. com or adage.com!

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Stress Over GPA

This afternoon I was having a difficult time when dealing with stress of finals and final papers coming up. I was freaking out about what my final grades would be because I have worked hard all semester to achieve A’s and want to keep them but seem to be having a bit of trouble in one of my classes. I decided to take a research break and check out what was going on at PRdaily.com and I am glad I did because it turned out to be just what I needed at the moment.

I got onto the website and an article popped up titled, “Students the 9 things that matter more than GPA.” Wow, it was exactly what I was looking for. The article explains that while GPA is important and you should take your classes seriously, it will not be as useful as some people think without other important skills.

The article goes on to suggest there are other things that will be important and will matter when trying to find a job. Some of the things the article listed is knowing how you learn, applying theory to real life situations, time management, relevant personal experience, portfolios, the ability to give and receive feedback, presentation skills, writing skills, and your network.

I think all of these things are true and should be remembered by students when they are stressing over school and grades. I know this from experience because since I have started my internship I have learned so many things a classroom never taught me. With the hands on experience I have gained in my internship such as putting together a canned food drive and working with contests for promotions as well as sending out press releases via email, I have become familar with all the steps necessary that I wouldn’t have completely understood until being able to do them myself.

In my mass communication courses I have learned to handle constructive criticism and peer reviews of my work as well as give professional input of my own on classmates work. I have also learned this through working with my boss at my internship and realized that the first product usually has to undergo a lot of changes and edits before producing the perfect final one.

As I said before this was a great read and I suggest for other students who are feeling the stress of finals to read it as well.

 

Penn State Scandal

Since the unraveling of the Penn State scandal many brands have been scared off just like they were after the Tiger Woods incident and other controversial incidents. Penn State’s former defensive coordinator, who left the team in 1999, is facing charges that he abused eight boys as young as 10 years old in his own home and at the teams locker room showers. The abuse dates back as far as 1996 and the defensive coordinator has been under investigation since 2008. He allegedly recruited victims through a charity organization he founded known as “Second Mile.”  Once the charity found out he was under investigation in 2008 they cut off all contact between him and the children.

As if this wasn’t bad enough for the university, two other coaches are accused of covering up the incidents for years. They apparently were aware of what was going on and said nothing to officials to try to stop it.

Liberty Mutual pulled its banner ads supporting the sponsorship for coach of the year awards from the website and other team fan sites. Cars.com also steered clear from their ads being associated with the team when they decided to pull ads from ESPN’s coverage of their game against Nebraska.

According to ABC News, in contrast, Nike, Chevy, John Deere, and American Red Cross have said they are not going to be ending partnership with the universities athletics.

It will be interesting to follow the story to see if more details unfold and more brands pull away from the team. In crisis situations it is important for companies and businesses to stay as far away from the negative publicity as possible. I think if I was a brand supporting the team I would be considering pulling away from the negative attention as well. Although your brand is not guilty of the crimes or scandal, it could hurt your reputation by being affiliated with the “bad guys,” and that is something that should always be remembered and considered.

penn state scandal has supporting brands scared

Penn State scandal

Kardashian and Humphries call it quits after 72 days of marriage

As a loyal fan of “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” someone who watched “Kim’s Fairytale Wedding: A Kardashian Event” more than once I was shocked to hear the news of the divorce. After 72 days of marriage Kris Humphries and Kim Kardashian have called it quits. Kardashian was seen filing for a divorce on Monday October 31, 2011. It is said their divorce is filed under grounds of  irreconcilable differences.

The extravagant wedding aired on television in early October and included more than 500 guests. Kris Jenner, mother of Kim Kardashian, has talked about the split on “The View” and NBC’s “Today” saying the wedding was not a sham for the cameras and neither was  the relationship.

Kardashian posted a blog telling her fans that her marriage was not a sham and that she feels terrible. She also said in the blog that she will be donating money from the gifts she received at the wedding to the Dream Foundation. She also acknowledged that she got caught up in everything and when she should have ended the relationship before the wedding she did not know how to. Kardashian’s sisters and family are sticking by her side through  this tough time and heartache.

Kardashian wishes to keep her divorce drama off tv and she does not plan to be on “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” until 2012.

Kris Humphries has released a statement in shock of the news. He says he loves his wife and would do anything to make it work. A source has said that Humphries found out via internet about his divorce. He apparently knew they were going through a tough time but thought they could work it out.

Kardashian really wanted a family and babies. I feel really bad that her marriage ended up like this and I think that she deserves to find true love and happiness one day. I also don’t know what to believe if Humphries really had to find out online or if he is just saying that to look like a victim. To read more on the divorce here are some links I found interesting!

Kim blogs about the split

Kris Jenner Talks of Daughters Divorce

Kardashian divorce

 

Christmas Time

I know it isn’t even Halloween over yet but I can’t help but to be thrilled about the upcoming Christmas season. The reason I am so excited is because at my internship I am working with Operation Food Search for a company wide food drive. We are planning contests between the departments and prizes for the winning team. I am so excited to give back to an organization that helps people in our local community.

As I have been preparing distribution materials, I have been researching and reading about Operation Food Search. I was not aware that over 50% of the recipients they help are children. I also was not aware that they helped over 100,00 victims to hunger last year.

Once I read that I knew even more that I wanted to make this food drive a huge success. I have been preparing flyers, sending emails, and coming up with ideas to really get the employee morale going. Since I was reading I found the way to really have a successful event is to have a contest or competition to go along with it.

We are also planning to build a canned food Christmas tree in our facility. I am going to get tree trimming decorations and make it a discussion piece for employees and customers alike.

I think giving back during the holidays is something everyone should do. Hunger does not take a holiday unfortunately so giving these donations is vital for some in the community.

 

Think like a Kardashian, Score a Job

The number one stress on all college graduates or in my case soon to be college graduate is finding a job. All I have known until this year has been my retail part time jobs and school. For the last 16 years of my life, it has been all about school. Now that I have a great internship that I love, the real world and starting my career seems less scary but making sure I land the job after graduation is still a constant stress on my mind. It is overwhelming when thinking of life without classes or assignments but it is also exciting!

I was reading PRdaily and found a post on ways thinking like Kim Kardashian could land your next job. This immediately drew me in because not only do I love Kim Kardashian but I am looking for all tips possible for when I am thrown out into the real working world.

The article claims four ways thinking like Kardashian could land you a job. One way is to brand yourself. Most of us execute branding strategies without even knowing that we are doing so. Branding is not something we can pick up, it is perceptions others have of you. You need to know how you want to be pereceived and what makes you stand out from others.

Another way is to utilize messages not medium. Be a part of the conversation everywhere and follow the company your dying to work for on Twitter or like them on Facebook. Before you do this, make sure all pictures and comments on your accounts are appropriate or utilize privacy settings.

The article also discusses expanding social networks and being creative. You have got to put yourself out there in person and online. You not only need to attend networking events but keep up with opportunities like internships and career fairs that you are made aware of. Creativity is what can set you apart from others instantly. Market yourself in many different formats and explore a variety of options. While you should utilize Facebook and LinkedIn think of different ways to get yourself out there like blogs or online portfolios.

I believe creativity is a huge part of success as well as being able to be diverse. Showing your skills in all ways and showing all your skills to possible future employers is extremely important and should be taken seriously by everyone.

Kim Kardashian Tips for Success

 

Birds the word… or is it squirrel?

With the national league championship series coming to a close it seems bird is the word or maybe now the word is squirrel? The St. Louis Cardinals have a popular new mascot, the Rally Squirrel. After making two appearances during the Cardinals games the critter is now a part of the baseball team’s family. For a city with the best fans around and a city that has bird fever, the squirrel has been welcomed in with arms wide open.

New merchandise featuring the mascot has become quite popular with the Cards fans. Sportsprint has had to hire extra help for the production of the rally squirrel t-shirts and merchandise. The shirts have moved up sales dramatically and it is expected to continue to be in demand for a while. Sportsprint has two St. Louis area locations and will need the extra help they hired for shipping merchandise across the country. People everywhere across the United States are ordering Rally Squirrel merchandise.

The Rally Squirrel has already associated good with it’s name. Anheuser Busch InBev has already bought thousands of pieces of Rally Squirrel merchandise from Sportsprint to be sold to raise money for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center. Already about $210,000 has been raised by the Rally Squirrel campaign.

I think this is an awesome thing to be a part of. The Rally Squirrel merchandise is entertaining and exciting for Cardinals fans and for the St. Louis area. The new mascot has been a huge success and will continue to be so for a while. Being able to buy a t-shirt or a hat to support your favorite sports team is exciting enough on it’s own but knowing that from buying the merchandise you are helping a great cause makes it an even better purchase. I think it is safe to say that bird isn’t the only word in St. Louis anymore but now it may be squirrel.

 

To read more on the Rally Squirrel!

Rally Squirrel!

Rally Squirrel Merchandise