Monthly Archives: February 2019

The Evolution of Industry-Leading Materials and Items

Since the dawn of time, humanity has always had a way of getting a message or even a gift to other people long distances. Whether it’s through word of mouth and a runner who traveled long distances, someone on horseback to get somewhere farther away even quicker, or even machinery that creates parcels and other machinery that carries them across the world, we’ve always had something in place in order to send messages and packages long distances.

So when you stop to think about how shipping boxes are the current “best” option for packages in today’s shipping standards, it really makes you wonder what the next step is. I mean, really, if something as simple as a cardboard box is the best we have, what’s the next rung up? What’s the next evolution in the shipping industry that will change the world? Will it be a new material that is even lighter and sturdier than cardboard? Will that material take too much money to produce or too much time in comparison to cardboard? Will it be as environmentally friendly and recyclable as cardboard?

There are a lot of questions surrounding the future of packaging and shipping, but the reality is that right now, shipping boxes are the best at what they do. So until we discover a way to refine those boxes or create something entirely new, everything is good where it’s at.

And when you think about the evolution of things, they only need to change when change is needed. When pressure is put on someone, something, or some being, things begin changing and that person or thing adapts accordingly. As of right now, there’s nothing better than cardboard in terms of how cheap it is, how sustainable it is, and how lightweight and strong it is. Once the next material just happens upon humanity, I’m sure we’ll adopt it slowly into shipping until it just makes sense to mass produce in favor of cardboard. But until then, cardboard will likely reign supreme for many years to come.

What’re some other items or materials you can think of that are the “best” at what they do currently and simply don’t have any competition to dethrone them? I can think of a few off the top of my head, but one that stands out for sure is the iPhone. Currently, there is nothing “more advanced” or “better” than the iPhone, even if it was considered luxury. It is the bar and always has been the bar for smartphones. Even if Google phones and Samsung phones are on par, they aren’t ever strictly better. I’m just curious to see what happens when the iPhone becomes obsolete when the next piece of technology comes out and blows it away for good.

When will that be and what will it be?

You Can Never Have Too Much Supplies

Growing up, I learned the value of work ethic applied to your life because of the diligence and respect that my parents treated their job with. They always made it a point to show up early, work hard, and put their careers at the forefront of their lives. No matter what happened, they never missed work. Heck, I don’t even recall them ever missing because they were sick. Work was, quite frankly, non-negotiable with other things in their lives.

Now, while I think that at some point they could have relaxed a hair, they had had this work ethic instilled into them through their parents (and their parents through theirs). It’s no doubt what has happened to me. I take my job seriously and realize that it’s a top priority in my life that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Just like my parents, I don’t miss work just because I’m sick or something else has come up. I make it to my job no matter the cost.

One thing they also instilled in me is having an appreciation for everyday things. In particular, they always had an incredible stock of shipping supplies and the likes. (And I think it’s because they always had worked for the post office, because they never ran out of postage, cardboard boxes, or any other shipping supplies.) While these things seemed mundane to me when I was a child, I realize now that it’s the commonplace items that we rely on (otherwise they wouldn’t be commonplace).

Nonetheless, I now make it a point to keep my place stocked with all sorts of packaging and office supplies, because when something needs shipped, it needs shipped right away. And all of these supplies have served me quite well beyond just shipping things. I can use my boxes for storage, my tape for repairing small things, and labels for other projects, too.

Without fail, I come to think of my parents when I see who I’ve become. From day-to-day items to the common tasks involved in my dayjob, I know that my work ethic, habits, and ideals were bred out of their own hard work and ways. I’m definitely interested to see all the traits, habits, and preferences that my children take on from me, though there are a few bad habits that I’m hopeful they will drop, too. I guess that’s not up to me to decide, though, is it?

Ecommerce and Valentine’

Now that February has come around, you can focus on that one holiday that people love to hate and hate to love: Valentine’s Day. It’s a holiday surrounded by loathing, love, and lust alike, but no matter how you regard the day of hearts and the color pink, it’s undoubtedly one that ecommerce businesses love to capitalize on.

If you’re someone who runs one of these online businesses, you know what I’m talking about. It’s so easy to market niche Valentine’s Day products to starry-eyed teens and college students who want to make a big impression on a crush or someone they’re recently in a relationship with. Or, even more, anyone selling jewelry knows that it’s a huge day for sales, as spouses come in to make big impressions on their husbands and wives or are even looking for tokens of forgiveness.

But as technology and society progresses, so too do transactions on the internet. Fewer and fewer customers are making trips to the store when they can simply buy things online and have them shipped right to their doorsteps. Why go out and make an effort in a big store when you can just pinpoint exactly what it is you want online (and often search for very specific and niche items) for less effort and sometimes less money?

A big part of this experience, then, is the cardboard box. All around the world, millions of shipping boxes will be in transit to arrive on Valentine’s Day in hopes of making it before “the deadline” of the exchange of gifts between two lovers.

Whether those shipping boxes make it in time or not, though, is up to the purchaser. Did they pay for same-day, one-day, or two-day shipping? Can they trust ground shipping or priority to make it in the 7 business days that was advertised at checkout?

No matter the case, business is booming in mid-February for all online businesses simply because of “love.” Whether or not it’s really in the name of love or not for those customers is irrelevant if it means business is booming for online retailers and distributors.

So, there it is. Just like other big holidays, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to cash in for businesses considering how crazy people can become during gift-giving season. If you’re an ecommerce company, you’re likely reaping the benefits of doing things electronically, because that’s exactly where the younger generation goes to buy their gifts nowadays.

Building the Right Office for You

Having a good set up in your office is essential for keeping your productivity high and your motivation higher. Without a comfortable and familiar setting in your office, why would you have any will or umph to get stuff done? I sure know I need familiarity, style, and a personalized environment that fits my working mood.

For example, I’ve recently added a couch to my office in order to keep it “homey” but also just to fill space. The more space there is that’s empty in my office, the more I just feel . . . meh. But with an environment more conducive to relaxing every now and then, I feel like I can knock a lot of work out at once at my desk and then kick back on my couch for 30 minutes to wind down and reset for another productive bout of work.

So, now that I’ve got that locked down, I’ve been looking at new desks, office chairs, and desk lamps. As it stands, my desk is pretty plain and my chair is alright. And I have no desk lamp. Things could be spiced up with more drawers, better (and prettier) wood, and a more comfortable chair. I really feel like these things will allow me to knock out even more things during the periods I’m at my desk for a long time.

Additionally, I just got myself a great new mouse. Before, I was simply using my track pad on my laptop. It wasn’t that great, and I’ve been pretty in need of something better. Luckily, I just found a $50 mouse on sale for $30. I’ve mapped a lot of different buttons to things like controlling my volume for the music I play while also including different “productive” buttons like cut, copy, and paste. This, I feel, will give me a big turnaround in productivity as well. No longer do I have to worry about my stupid track pad actually registering me highlighting an entire paragraph for which I can copy and paste. Instead, I’ve got a reliable piece of technology that won’t leave me frustrated.

From here, it’s really just decorating the rest of my office with interesting trinkets and useful office and shipping supplies like staplers, new pens, and abundant tape. In fact, having the appropriate amount and kinds of office and shipping supplies will help me to remember I’m at work and not in my living room, considering I’ll be quite comfortable once I’ve got the dream set up of an office.

So, in all, it’s all about surrounding yourself with enough stuff to feel familiar with the office and comfortable where you work while also remembering to stay quite productive throughout the day. It’s a balance to maintain for sure, but one that’s worth striving for and buying a few extra items to attain.