Going digital is one of the more popular phrases for organizations these days, especially when it’s the only way to survive tough competition. Expanding a company from a brick and mortar only business to having a strong online presence, however, can be easier said than done. That’s why one postal organization has enlisted the aid of an executive from a well-known technology company to give its efforts a boost.
Australia Post has recently hired Tracey Fellows, head of Microsoft’s Asia Pacific division, to lead its digital strategy. The highly anticipated move will seek to use her creative talents to help with the merger of Australia Post’s traditional mail services with its e-service units. Part of that responsibility will be overseeing the Digital MailBox service.
Each year, more people rely on their smartphones for activities they used to do through traditional means. In 2008, global smartphone sales exceeded 139 million units. In 2012, there were an estimated 670+ million in smartphone sales worldwide. Smartphones are even replacing personal computers as the preferred way to conduct transactions online.
With the strong shift toward digital services by consumers around the world, seeking a leg up on the competition by providing superior digital services could ultimately be the arbiter of which organizations survive long-term.
Do you think USPS will have a strong role in the digital arena of tomorrow?
Posted by bennyblogger on May 24, 2013
One of America’s favorite pastimes is a passion for baseball. The popular game, originally created in the 1800s, is known for its rich history, loyal fans, and iconic symbols. The sport has been an integral part in the growth and development of America, very much like the U.S. Postal Service.
Like baseball, the Postal Service has a deep history rooted in American culture. It helped push the expansion of the transportation network across the land, promoting new and innovative technologies to move mail to every corner of the country. Baseball served to link America together during some of the most difficult times in history. USPS did the same through the mail by making even the remotest of locations in the country no further than a postage stamp away.
Baseball introduced new ideas and terminology such as ballpark, first base, hardball, rain-check, and the famous quote by Yogi Berra, “It ain’t over till it’s over” that spread to uses outside the sport. USPS expanded the use of air transportation and established ZIP Codes embraced by customers around the world.
Both organizations have also crossed paths directly countless times, with the portraits of many of the most famous baseball players finding their way onto collectible postage stamps. Several Post Offices have also been named after baseball players, including Jackie Robinson, Roberto Clemente, and George Kell.
Baseball and the Postal Service are two classic American icons that continue to serve fans of all ages. It’s a true home run combination.
Posted by bennyblogger on May 23, 2013
This year marks the 150th anniversary of key battles that took place in 1863 during the Civil War. The conflict raged on from 1861 through 1865 and claimed the lives of more than 620,000 soldiers.
The stamp set features the Battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863) and the Battle of Vicksburg (April 16-July 4, 1863). The Battle of Gettysburg was Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s second campaign into the north. During the conflict, the Union held the line at Gettysburg, forcing General Lee’s army to retreat back to Virginia.
The Battle of Vicksburg was seen as one of the pivotal turning points in the war. Union Major General Ulysses S. Grant was determined to seize Vicksburg, MS, and gain control of the strategically important Mississippi river. After a prolonged siege and with critical supplies exhausted, Confederate Lieutenant General John C. Pemberton surrendered to Grant, giving the Union control of the Mississippi river and effectively splitting Confederate forces in two.
The stamp set will be available for purchase tomorrow in souvenir sheets of 12 (six stamps of each design).
Posted by bennyblogger on May 22, 2013
Vacations are a fun, relaxing way to get away from the hustle and bustle at work. They help to de-stress the body and mind while simultaneously recharging both to handle the rigors of the road ahead.
Studies have shown that stress can cause serious health problems for those that choose not to address it. Taking regular vacations can help reduce stress by melting away accumulated strain and tension. They also have the potential to increase longevity and make someone a more productive person both on and off the job.
Here’s how Arizona District Safety Specialist Kirk Lenertz manages his stress.
“Last month I went on a 10-day expedition to Antarctica with my wife. We started the adventure in Ushuaia, Argentina which is the southern most continually inhabited city in the world. We made the 600 miles Drake Passage crossing in two days and then spent five days along the Antarctic Peninsula making three landings on the continent.
“We were unable to post any postcards because we did not go to any of the research stations in the area we travelled. The furthest south we got was 65 degrees south which was 90 miles from the Antarctic Circle and 1150 miles from the south pole. On the two-day return to Ushuaia, we experienced 35 foot waves after leaving the South Shetland Islands. A memorable trip filled with wildlife including whales, seals, penguins and albatross in addition to magnificent scenery.
“This trip completed my quest of setting foot on all seven continents and was my 90th country I have been to in my travels.”
Vacations don’t have to be expensive to be effective. A weekend stay at a campground, lake, beach, and other natural places of wonder can be fun and relaxing without taking a large bite out of a budget.
Where were some of your most relaxing vacations?
Posted by bennyblogger on May 21, 2013
“Don’t worry about him. My dog doesn’t bite.”
Many have said something similar to the statement above about their four-legged companions. While their pet might show a generous affection toward family, it may not feel quite the same way about strangers.
There are many reasons why dogs bite. Dogs can be protective of their property, feeling the urge to attack in order to defend. This protection can extend around a yard, a favorite toy, or a human. A dog can be afraid, particularly around strangers, and may strike at someone out of that fear. Giving chase to prey is another reason dogs bite. A dog’s natural pursuit and catch instinct can be triggered when it sees someone running or bicycling.
With many reasons why a dog might bite, it’s important to remember how to avoid being bitten:
- Don’t run past a dog.
- If a dog threatens you, don’t scream. Avoid eye contact. Try to remain motionless until the dog leaves, and then back away slowly until the dog is out of sight.
- Don’t approach a strange dog, especially one that’s tethered or confined.
- If you believe a dog is about to attack you, try to place something between yourself and the dog, such as a satchel, backpack, or bicycle.
Posted by bennyblogger on May 20, 2013
Promoting postal services can help cultivate new sales and support strong future growth for the organization. For 75 sharp-eyed carriers at the Templeton Station in Colorado Springs, CO, spotting opportunities to promote USPS products and services is an active specialty.
On May 10, the carriers at Templeton were celebrated for achieving a 100 percent Customer Connect participation rate. Their hard work and determination to promote the business has allowed them to become the first large-scale facility in the Colorado/Wyoming District to achieve that level of success this fiscal year.
“It’s a terrific accomplishment because it hasn’t been done by an office this size,” said Colorado/Wyoming District Manager Selwyn Epperson.
To reward their remarkable success, Colorado Springs Postmaster Greg Penson provided the carriers with a breakfast burrito celebration.
Posted by bennyblogger on May 17, 2013
Next week marks the 75th anniversary of National Air Mail Week, so declared by President Roosevelt and Postmaster General James A. Farley back in 1938. The celebration honored the 20th anniversary of the first air mail flight in 1918 and was a tribute to the speed and reliability of the Post Office airmail service.
During National Air Mail Week, Farley encouraged everyone to send a letter via air mail. There were an abundance of contests to celebrate the occasion, such as racing pigeons and stagecoaches against air mail flights, essay contests, and creative poster contests. Individual towns across the country also embraced the festivity by creating cachets with their own local touches to send through air mail.
Many special flights were added to locations all across the country in support of the increased mail volume. Landing spots were cleared that had never received a plane before in preparation for new arrivals. Volunteer pilots were even asked to help deliver the special cargo, with approximately 60 pilots signing on for the task.
The 1938 National Air Mail Week event captivated the hearts and minds of the American population during a particularly difficult economic time in American history.
Posted by bennyblogger on May 16, 2013
Born in Houston, TX, Lydia Mendoza (1916-2007) was a popular Tejano music singer whose career spanned seven decades.
Mendoza first learned to play the guitar from her mother and grandmother. She used their teachings to join the family group, recording her first album alongside her mother, father, and sister in 1928. Not long thereafter, Mendoza branched off on her own, recording more than 1,000 songs with her 12-string guitar.
The Lydia Mendoza stamp is available today as a Forever stamp.
Posted by bennyblogger on May 15, 2013
Since the creation of package delivery services, customers have enjoyed receiving their special purchases from USPS and other delivery companies. If a retail company implements a proposed innovative delivery strategy, shipping companies could find an entirely new class of competition entering the arena.
In an effort to save on shipping costs and provide same-day delivery services, Wal-Mart is considering the idea of tapping its customer base as a new delivery mechanism. The idea, still in the development phase, would offer customers a discount on their shopping bills in exchange for delivering packages to online shoppers who live nearby.
There are many regulatory and legal issues to resolve with the proposal, but it could be an additional tool in Wal-Mart’s delivery arsenal. The company is currently testing same-day delivery with its own vehicle fleet in five major cities and is planning on introducing parcel locker services this summer.
What do you think would be some of the challenges in customer delivery services?
Posted by bennyblogger on May 14, 2013
Stickers are used for a variety of purposes. From decorating greeting cards to displaying the price on a box of cereal, stickers have been a popular way to bring smiles and information to people around the world. When it comes to unaddressed mail, one particular Post Office has a sticky idea for its customers.
To expand customer choice in the mail they receive, Hongkong Post has allowed its customers to place a sticker on the upper right-hand corner of their mailboxes to decline the receipt of unaddressed mail.
A carrier that sees a sticker containing the instruction “No circular mail” on a customers mailbox will refrain from depositing unaddressed mail into it. All other addressed mail is delivered as normal.
Do you think a sticker similar to that offered by Hongkong Post should be made available in the United States?
Posted by bennyblogger on May 13, 2013