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Security Shield Products: Answering the Call to Action for Preventing School Shootings

A school shooter, rampaging through halls previously considered safe. It’s the nightmare of parents and school children alike. But while there are arguments to be made in regards to legal- and mental health issues, one thing is indisputable: some innovation could really help.

Glass windows and doors might give the impression of security, the fact of the matter is, glass is the most vulnerable point of entry for intruders. In most scenarios, it will shatter into debris, making it all too easy for armed threats to make an unwarranted entry. Fortunately, some companies have responded to the call to action for a security shield—particularly, more secure and impenetrable glass windows and doors. In turn, schools, retailers, offices and other buildings susceptible to threats can effectively stop intruders at the first point of entry. Such a security shield can help prevent school shootings. Thankfully, bold companies are redefining the market.

Preventing school shootings with bullet-resistant glazing
Bullet-resistant glazing can help make glass almost impenetrable.

Bold Strides Against Unwarranted Entry and To Prevent School Shootings

With school shootings and acts of terror suddenly recurring news headlines, anti-intrusion systems have progressed immensely in recent years. From safety and security shields to ballistic retrofit glazing treatments, several brands have made strides to better protect building occupants. More importantly, they can act as a deterrent, preventing school shootings via science.

Industry giant 3M is perhaps the largest producer of security shield products, with window film and tint offerings. The company even offers a security shield product designed for schools, with solutions that are made to hold broken glass together. Thus, they hinder anyone trying to break and enter through a compromised door or window.

CJ Buffer, another window film manufacturer, offers bullet-resistant security shield film and installation. In addition to providing protection from burglars, break-ins and shootings, CJ Buffer’s window films also mutes hazards from earthquakes, weather and storms. Similarly, Security FilmTek offers comparable security shield product solutions that deliver bullet-resistant capabilities in a standard window film treatment.

Bullet-resistant glazing is a component of a security shield.
Companies like 3M, DefenseLite, FilmTek and CJ Buffer have been using innovation to prevent school shootings.

DefenseLite and BulletShield

DefenseLite’s bullet-resistant or bulletproof product line is an advanced retrofit safety glazing solution, with its BulletShield providing a security shield to better protect schools, storefronts, and other buildings.

Considered the “Body Armor for Windows,” BulletShield is a polycarbonate shield glazing solution. It provides a bullet-resistant security shield for glass windows and doors. Its security shield is engineered to protect building occupants from ballistic threats. In addition, it provides a transparent design that doesn’t obstruct views to the outdoors. It minimizes armed attacks—thus helping  to prevent school shootings and save lives.

Though used by courthouses and corporate offices, DefenseLite gives discounted programs to campuses and schools. These programs are part of a focused effort to help make schools safer.

Preventing school shootings via science
No one can argue against the need for a greater security shield around schools.

The Call to Prevent School Shootings

Thankfully, some bold brands have pioneered bullet-resistant and anti-intrusion security shield solutions. These eliminate the need for unsightly metal gates and expensive roll-down grills. Unfortunately, not all security shield solutions are created equal. But, they can work together in preventing unwarranted entry and armed threats. Their pursuits collectively help prevent school shootings in the process, thereby helping to save more lives.

From these bold companies’ impressive security shield product lines to its community sentiment, there’s that they no doubt have delivered a new sense of empowerment against armed threats. In the long run, they have made bold steps toward significantly further prevent school shootings.

The Airbnb Startup Story: An Odd Tale of Airbeds, Cereal and Ramen

Airbnb.com was the truncated form of Airbedandbreakfast.com. The change in the website’s name occurred around the time the company was expanding its listing. It went from airbeds and shared spaces to a wide array of properties including entire homes, private rooms, apartments, manors, castles, and private islands. To date, Airbnb has a valuation of $38 billion. It offers six million listings in 191 countries and regions all over the world.

With this scale, Airbnb is the leading global online marketplace and hospitality service dominating the market today. More than a decade since the company’s launching, the Airbnb startup story of resilience, perseverance and creativity is a tale worth telling. Airbnb founder Brian Chesky and his simple idea went a long way, creating communities around the world.

airbnb founder Brian Chesky talks about the airbnb startup story
$38 billion later, would anybody still call this a bad idea?
climate change solutions and the companies saving the environment like airbnb

Airbeds and Rents: The Airbnb Startup Story

The first Airbnb startup story revolves around airbeds and rents. Back in October 2007, the to-be Airbnb founder and his roommate Joe Gebbia were looking for means to pull in extra cash. With the upcoming Industrial Designers’ Conference in San Francisco, there was a shortage of hotel rooms and accommodations. Both unemployed and with their San Francisco apartment rent due in a few weeks, the pair saw this as an opportunity. The duo rented out their apartment loft to designers looking for a place to stay. Immediately, Chesky and Gebbia launched a simple website – airbedandbreakfast.com, and offered airbeds and a homemade breakfast for $80 each night.

When three people showed up at their doorstep, Chesky and Gebbia thought that they may have stumbled upon a big idea. Joe Gebbia’s former roommate, Nathan Blecharczyk joined the team as one of the Airbnb founder and developed a business model around the idea.

However, thinking that the idea may not fly, the Airbnb founder shelved Airbnb. Chesky and Gebbia then tinkered with the concept of roommate matching services. Four weeks into the project, the founders realized that roommates.com was already existing. With no other alternatives, the team went back to Airbed and Breakfast.

The Airbnb founder, along with Gebbia and Blecharczyk, staged various attempts to launch the venture since 2008. One was during the SXSW 2008 Conference where the website received only two bookings, one of which is Chesky. Secondly, learning from experience that room shortage meant people looking for alternative accommodation options, the team launched again during the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, with dismal results. While the team was able to get media attention, user traction did not follow. This part of the Airbnb startup story was what Airbnb founder Brian Chesky called, The Trough of Sorrows. Neck-deep in debt, Airbnb was in dire need for funding.

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How to be a Cereal Entrepreneur According to the Airbnb Founder

In the context of the Airbnb startup story, generating revenue and finding investors came from an unusual source. Since the “bed” part of “bed and breakfast” was not getting favorable results, Chesky thought of focusing on the breakfast side of the equation. Riding on the election fever, Chesky and Gebbia thought of creating presidential-themed breakfast cereals – The Obama O’s; The Breakfast of Change and Captain McCain’s; A Maverick in Every Bite. The founders handcrafted, numbered and sold each limited edition cereal boxes for $40 apiece.

The cereal box idea will go down in the Airbnb startup story as the much-needed break that kept the company afloat for a few more months. The proceeds from the cereal boxes almost pulled the company out of debt and gained Airbnb some national press coverage. In November 2008, Y Combinator founder Paul Graham was not convinced that the Airbnb business model would work. But through the presidential-themed cereal boxes, the venture capitalist was impressed by the founders’ spirit and passion.

Chesky hopes to inspire the same level of determination and creativity from every Airbnb employee.

Mission: Ramen-Profitable by Demo Day

The company’s inclusion in the Y Combinator program pushed the Airbnb founder to focus on making the company ramen-profitable by demo day. The tide of the recession was hitting the shores. There was a high possibility that no investors would show up on the demo day. In order to prepare for this possibility, the goal of each startup within the batch is to be ramen-profitable by the end of the program. Ramen-profitable meant that the business is profitable if you just live on ramen.

airbnb founder has the confidence of y combinator says paul graham of venture capitalist
Giving up is not an option. Never forget about the airbed that went global.

With a $20,000 seed funding, a clear goal, and a better work structure, the founders of Airbnb traveled to New York – where a majority of their community was located. In the Airbnb startup story, this is the part where things started to head in the right direction. For the next three months, Airbnb focused on developing a relationship with their customers. The founders supported their hosts by uploading photos that showcase the properties. They also guided the hosts on how to create the best homestay experience. By the end of the Y Combinator program, the founders were able to create a group of loyal customers who not only loved the company but also helped the company grow its customer base. Also, Airbnb was able to secure $600,000 funding from Sequoia Capital. From this point, Airbnb was unstoppable.

At face value, letting a stranger into your home sounded like a preposterous idea. But the world of startups have proven time and again, that what sounded like a crazy idea may actually be the next big idea. The Airbnb startup story is proof. Breaking the mold has been Airbnb’s strength. Through Airbnb’s founding years, this quality has propelled the company’s mission of “creating a world where anyone can belong anywhere.”

Bold Leader Spotlight – Brian Chesky, Co-Founder and CEO of Airbnb

Brian Chesky is not your typical tech startup CEO. In fact, he began studying architecture and attaining a degree in industrial design. But today, Chesky is well recognized as the bold Airbnb leadership figure. The global peer-to-peer lodging service provides accommodations for over two million guests each night. So, it’s only natural to wonder how one of the youngest CEOs became the face of Airbnb leadership.

Having been listed among Fortune Magazine’s top 20 of the World’s Greatest Leaders, Chesky is certainly intriguing. In addition to his dynamic personality, Chesky has unique insights on what it means to be a bold leader. Guts, determination, perseverance and an ability to change allowed him to excel as Airbnb leadership grew in the market.  Humility, values, and a collaborative approach similarly showcase his bold leadership talents. His Airbnb leadership approach is a major reason the company continues to thrive. As per Ed Kopko’s book, “Project Bold Life: The Proven Formula for Taking on Challenges and Achieving Happiness and Success”, “Pursuing boldness in our lives demands seeking a higher level of excellence.” Chesky certainly sought a higher level of excellence, and it shows in his achievements.

brian chesky airbnb leadership
For the Airbnb CEO, the excitement in business is in “getting there”. 

Leveraging Unique Experiences to Challenge the Status Quo

Chesky and Joe Gebbia, another cofounder, first came up with the idea that led to Airbnb in 2007. They shared an apartment in San Francisco where the Industrial Designer Society of America was holding its convention. Short on rent, and realizing all the hotels were completely booked, they had an idea. They bought three air mattresses for their place and rented out each for $80 a night. Thus, the idea of “air bed and breakfast” was born.

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The two officially began working on their idea in 2008 and soon added the company’s third cofounder, Nathan Blecharczyk. Getting traction, however, was difficult. Selling their idea was a challenge to venture capitalists for a few reasons. For one, no one trusted an architectural designer to launch the next big unicorn. Likewise, no one bought into the idea that a person would want to live in someone else’s home. But Chesky and his colleagues knew they were onto something because of their unique experience. It was this single unique circumstance that led to Airbnb leadership internationally.

brian chesky shares airbnb leadership style
There’s more to humility than just being a virtue. It does actually solve problems.

Humility and a Willingness to Guide Others

One of the greatest aspects of Chesky’s bold leadership is his continued humility as the Airbnb leadership figure. Early in the course, Chesky sought out anyone who might offer advice for success. One of those pieces of advice came from Y Combinator’s Paul Graham. He encouraged Chesky to get to know every single one of his customers. While that would be impossible today, in 2008 this was more feasible. So Chesky and his other Airbnb leadership team flew between New York and California and did just that.

These early experiences taught Chesky a great deal about bold leadership. By being humble, he was able to gain insights he would not otherwise have gained. Likewise, he has continued to use humility in dealing with various company conflicts. Specifically, issues that have arisen with landlords and city governments are being approached with a desire to understand. And Chesky himself seeks opportunities to lecture and mentor other entrepreneurs of the future. Airbnb leadership would not have enjoyed the same level of success without this important component.

brian chesky speaks about mentoring
When you think someone like Brian Chesky doesn’t need any more mentoring, he emphasizes how gaining knowledge from accomplished entrepreneurs is very important.

Value-Driven Airbnb Leadership Focused on Community Empowerment

Some of the criticisms of Airbnb relate to its effect on long-term housing in some urban markets. But at the same time, Chesky has sought to empower communities rather than undermine them. Specifically, a key reason for the Airbnb leadership position in the market is its effect on social ecosystems. Hundreds of struggling communities are now seeing tourism and an influx of commerce resulting from Airbnb travelers. In fact, it’s estimated the Airbnb ecosystem has generated over $60 billion for these communities and over 1.3 million jobs.

Chesky has always been about values and contributing to society. Indeed, the original idea sought to solve a key problem…insufficient rent money. But at the same time, the service met a concurrent community need as well. Chesky continues to see himself in this role by striving to create a product that’s both likable and sustainable. This value-driven Airbnb leadership approach epitomizes Chesky’s focus as a community and social leader.

brian chesky on being a community leader
Brian Chesky built a tribe, not a product.

Brian Chesky, Continuing to Grow as a Bold Leader

In 2015, Time Magazine recognized Chesky as one of the top 100 Most Influential People. In 2016, Forbes Magazine identified Chesky as one of the richest entrepreneurs under 40 years of age. These are just two of the many accolades Chesky has received for his bold leadership abilities. And certainly, he deserves these awards because of the kind of Airbnb leadership, which inspires so many people.

But Chesky isn’t done yet as he continues to guide the company in new directions taking on new challenges. In addition to being quite comfortable with change, Chesky embraces his desire to learn and grow. This explains not only why Airbnb leadership in the hotel market continues. It also accounts for its expansion into Airbnb experiences and other unique ventures. All of these bold leadership traits show why Brian Chesky is among the best CEO’s in the world today. And it will likely be the reason Airbnb may very well excel in areas we have yet to consider.

a cartoon of brian chesky of airbnb - a global peer-to-peer lodging service
Bold Leader Brian Chesky has a value-driven Airbnb leadership focused on community empowerment.

Airbnb Infographic