The Play by Play 7: Exploring Virtual Reality, Travel Trends, and March Madness
Hosts: Jack McFarlane & Nick Schlemmer
This week on The Play by Play podcast, Jack McFarlane and Nick Schlemmer jump into trends and predictions for work, travel, and sports.
– Virtual reality in the workplace
– Travel trends for Gen Z
– Bold predictions for March Madness
– Motivation for the week
Thank you for joining the show today! Remember to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts!
Jack McFarlane 0:15
Hi, everyone, and welcome to the HR Happy Hour Network. This is The Play by Play podcast hosted by myself, Jack McFarlane, and Nicholas Schlemmer.
Nick Schlemmer 0:23
How’s it going, guys, we have a great show lined up for you today. I’m really looking forward to it. And we’ll just jump right into our first segment here. Future of work. So in this segment, we’re kind of talking about the future and what that looks like in different aspects. And today’s topic we’re going to be talking about with VR in the workplace and what we can expect from that.
Jack McFarlane 0:47
So, VR has gained a lot of popularity over the last couple years, kind of started as like a project and kind of moved into gaming, like VR gaming. But now, a lot of industries are using it to save millions of dollars and just make life easier. One big industry that I’ve noticed right away that is taking full advantage of VR is the healthcare industry. I don’t know if you knew this, Nick. But you can actually get like a doctor’s appointment on your VR headset, you can be sitting in your living room with your VR get a doctor’s appointment, and they can legally prescribe you. Medicine in VR.
Nick Schlemmer 1:24
Very interesting. So that’s like having a doctor on the other VR set as well.
Jack McFarlane 1:28
Yeah. So like, they’d have the VR on, you’d have it on, and then they’d be like a virtual doctor’s office. So you don’t have to go anywhere. There’s not a lot of waiting, really, because you just load right up, you’re not in the waiting room.
Nick Schlemmer 1:40
And I know that you’ve kind of messed with this, but I believe it’s called Horizon, where you can build your own world. Is that correct?
Jack McFarlane 1:47
Yeah. So we’ll go into little more detail of that in just a couple minutes. But basically, I mean, yeah, you can use Horizon World to build anything you can. There’s games you can play in there. There’s virtual houses.
Nick Schlemmer 1:59
I was gonna say whatever you’re doing these virtual healthcare business, not sure the doctor has a virtual office and somebody had to build for him or her, or maybe they built it through something like Horizon.
Jack McFarlane 2:10
Yeah, no, there’s a lot of ways that you can build a virtual office, but you’re totally right. I mean, you’re not just doing this, like on a blank screen. I mean, it is its own virtual world. It’s called the metaverse is the universe in virtual reality? And yeah, I mean, doctors are taking full advantage of it. You can also practice surgery like so if you’re, you know, in med school, you don’t have to use the expensive dummies. And you can just put your headset off practice surgery right there.
Nick Schlemmer 2:37
Yeah. We’ve also seen this used for engineering and automotive work. We’re seeing technicians and stuff building car prototypes, drug prototypes, or may be in the virtual world. Now, it’s obviously not you’re not holding the wrench and all that stuff into that hands on, but you can see how parts work together. This maybe won’t work. It’s like a blueprint before you actually started.
Jack McFarlane 3:03
Yeah, exactly. I think that’s a really good point. I actually saw that due to this, especially companies like BMW and Jaguar, Land Rover are doing this with their engineers that they have actually saved millions of dollars in prototypes, because it’s very expensive to make a prototype even if it’s one car. It is much cheaper to just put on your VR headset, get a team of people and building right there in the virtual world for free.
Nick Schlemmer 3:26
And talk a little bit more about the the metaverse now it can be used for the workforce. Because the use for fun. Oh, yeah, you guys have a press play games, have meetings, create artwork, whatever, create your own world. It’s like Minecraft with VR.
Jack McFarlane 3:41
I mean, that’s it. There is no limitations. I mean, I know that I have been working on a secret project. I don’t think we can say it on here. But I’ve been doing a lot in especially horizon worlds building world. But yeah, you can play golf with your friends on two in the morning. If you want to. You don’t have to go to golf course you can just play golf, you can go to the casino. You can make art it you can do whatever you want in the virtual world.
Nick Schlemmer 4:06
And I’ve had I think you have as well. The game Beat Saber. Oh, yeah. VR is kind of like just the first game that prompts you to use your first VR headset. But I don’t know, it’s been so much fun. You got good at music, you’re throwing your hands around acting crazy. And you’re also kind of working out.
Jack McFarlane 4:26
Yeah, it’s a huge workout. And not only is a workout, it works on your hand eye coordination with hitting the things but I think that’s like more of a slept on area of VR is you can totally work out in VR. You can do training classes, you can do boxing, just playing games like golf and beat sabre. I mean, you are active. This is not a it can’t be a sit down and just use your hands. But most of these VR, it’s like you’re standing up walking around, moving around. It is a huge workout tool.
Nick Schlemmer 4:52
Yeah. And I was doing a little bit of research just on the workout side of what the VR world can be used for. And there’s this app issue called Supernatural. It is getting a lot of popularity, or it was invented in 2020. And by Time Magazine, it was voted number one for the best invention in the VR world. And it basically uses games. If you know what Beat Saber is like, we kind of explained it, but it’s like Beat Saber, you’re moving around constantly, you can do stretching, anything that may be, but they’re gaining tons of popularity with people in the VR world. They don’t have to leave their house to work out. That’s a huge thing now, especially after COVID.
Jack McFarlane 5:31
Ya know, for Supernatural now that you mentioned it, I have used it. Trish McFarlane loves it. She’s a huge advocate for it, because it’s like there’s like a personal trainer in it. It is a real workout like I did it, it will get you sweating. It is an improper exercise to do this in VR. I think kind of the last thing I want to hit is that if you’re a company, a lot of big ones. The one that I’m gonna use as an example is Wendy’s is building their own worlds for publicity, in gaining new customers and gaining new interactions they have it’s called the windy verse. And you go in there, they’ve got like, you know, all the Windies ads everywhere, and they’ve got these like virtual buildings and games and stuff. And like, I think what you’re going to see in the next, you know, 10 years is that every company will eventually have their own thing that you can go in and VR and visit and interact with.
Nick Schlemmer 6:24
No, no, I totally agree with that. Because adding this VR, it’s still fairly new. Not everybody has access to one. But I can only imagine that, say five years from now. It’s going to turn into almost like a phone. Everybody’s going to have some kind of virtual reality, whether it’s in VR, or even just like an app on your phone or something like that. Everybody’s getting it.
Jack McFarlane 6:46
Yeah, it’s getting cheaper and cheaper each each year. It’s getting better each year to I mean, I think you’re totally right. In 510 years, it’s it will be the new phone. So if you’re a company or in charge of marketing or something, definitely look into VR because it is next up. We’re telling you right here 2023 March 1, VR will be the next iPhone.
Nick Schlemmer 7:07
Yeah, that’s great. That kind of wraps up our first segment. Let’s move on to the next one.
Jack McFarlane 7:11
Yeah. So for our second segment today, we have another Top 10. Last time we did top 10 brands that are important to Gen Z, and today we’re going to focus on the top 10 Travel trends in Gen Z for 2023. So these are kind of everything that from international travel to just like local travel in Gen Z.
Nick Schlemmer 7:32
Yeah, starting off with the first thing straightaway, Airbnb, Airbnb with our generation is
Jack McFarlane 7:40
almost essential at this point for I mean, hotels or I mean, you’ve seen it in that there’s a Hilton commercial where it tries to, like make fun of oh, you rented a bad place. Why don’t you come stay with us? Because I mean, Airbnb has exploded, especially for Gen Z, because one because the pandemic hotels, you’re around a lot of people. And two is for the privacy. And when you get a whole house to yourself, you can rent it with your friends and each have your own room, it can be pretty cost effective.
Nick Schlemmer 8:08
Yeah, definitely. And Gen Z makes up the fastest growing group of users so far today for Airbnb. And then Airbnb also does this to where the owners of the properties get to choose basically the age limit that you can rent the place. And personally, from what I’ve seen in some of my travel experiences, is a lot of them allow you to be under 21 years. Usually it’s about they prefer 19 or 20. It’s kind of that drawing line. But it’s nice to be able to you’re not 21 yet, but you can go out and rent a place, spend time with friends, do whatever you need to do.
Jack McFarlane 8:42
Yeah, it just provides another way that you and your friends can get on travel if you want it relatively inexpensive. As long as you’re grouping it together. Now someone can be expensive. Don’t get me wrong. I think another tool is like Airbnb is like you said it that the owner gets to kind of choose you know who they let in. So you’re not letting in someone who’s going to trash your house and destroy it.
Nick Schlemmer 9:01
I think it’s good for both parties. Yeah. And definitely with our generation, if you include anything with technology. Our generation is more of if we can book it all behind and not have to call anybody or do anything like that. We are probably 10 times more likely to do it. Yeah. Yeah, to get this hit book now. And we’re good to go. That’s just it. That’s everything Gen Z needs.
Jack McFarlane 9:25
Yeah, I mean, that’s actually our next trend is that online booking and just using technology to plan a trip is extremely popular like a bar were the days of calling a travel agency and setting up a trip like that. For Gen Z. I mean, I’ve set up numerous trips in the past couple of months. And all I’ve done is go on Expedia, and you click, you know flights to and from. You can book hotels, you can book excursions, car rentals, everything in one site and that is the new norm for booking a trip. Yeah.
Nick Schlemmer 9:57
And a lot of times never you can combine all those things as well. Boom, it kind of saves you a little bit of money in the long run. Oh, yeah, I’m wondering with this company, the car within a hotel or something else, everything is kind of added together in one shared space.
Jack McFarlane 10:12
It’s easier to keep track of everything to I found because I mean, it is like set it’s in one shared space. It convenience, I think it’s the overall theme of Gen Z travel is how convenient, can you make it to plan and then execute a trip?
Nick Schlemmer 10:27
And then going off that convenience factor, and this is for any generation? If something is convenient? Would you say that you are way more likely to do it again, or spend more money doing something if it’s just really convenient? Exactly.
Jack McFarlane 10:40
I mean, that that is so true. If it’s convenient, I’ll even pay a little extra just for the convenience of it. And I think that’s kind of the brilliance in Expedia, especially because they have everything in one site.
Nick Schlemmer 10:51
Yeah. And then we have a little bit of data here and the most likely generation to splurge on a trip. Number one was 70% of Gen Z people.
Jack McFarlane 11:01
Yeah, so that statistic did catch me off guard. And you have to keep in mind that splurging for Gen Z might be different than splurging for millennials or Gen X, because splurging for us would mean spending maybe a normal amount on a trip. But still, I mean, 72%, I think I mean, that leads into another trend is that Gen Z is looking to travel. Yeah, it is 99%. And the generation says that they want to travel.
Nick Schlemmer 11:28
Yeah, a lot of our generation is looking to get, get out of house. Maybe this can even be internal leaving for college. It could be anything like that, just getting your foot out of the door out of your hometown. Once people kind of figure out what that feeling is like, wow, there’s way more out here in the world than just our hometown. We love it. And we are attracted to it.
Jack McFarlane 11:51
Oh, yeah. And then like that I in a way that kind of leads into Gen Z is also looking for unique and authentic experiences, like they’re not so focused on oh, let’s go to the same beach every year over and over again, as a family they want to get out they want to go places that maybe aren’t as popular. They want to go off the beaten path of vacation and trips and find what’s really unique out there.
Nick Schlemmer 12:13
Yeah, definitely. And then not just from just searching over Airbnb and Expedia. They had there’s so many different condos, cabins, anything that isn’t on the main stream, or the main street, per se, there 20 miles out of the way, yeah, just you’re secluded. And you can pretty much do anything you want. But that’s I think what Gen Z and maybe in other generations or what as well are starting to look for they don’t want to be a huge crowd of people all the time which these sites can offer.
Jack McFarlane 12:45
Yeah, I think part of that is due to the pandemic as well, because, you know, everyone was by themselves and or with a small group of friends when I think people realize, hey, let’s let’s get together in smaller groups, but go Do you know, really different things. Yeah. I mean, just one kind of unique travel experience for Gen Z is a lot of people are wanting to go on these food trips, where they’ll travel to another country. And the whole goal is to stay local and eat local. So you just experience a whole different lifestyle, and that itself is the trip. It’s not so much the destination of where you’re going anymore. It’s more What are you doing? How are you getting there? Yeah, what is the overall experience?
Nick Schlemmer 13:24
Yeah, definitely. Definitely. And then also, personally for me, whenever social media, it’s yes, it’s a huge influence on I say, almost every generation, but especially for our generation. Even with me, if I see somebody that I follow on Snapchat, or just like celebrity or something, if I see that they go to a certain place, I’m looking that up, see how much it costs to get there, because I want to do the same thing that they’re doing. And that’s just becoming a creative. I feel like people not necessarily following celebrities or social media influencers, but acting like them.
Jack McFarlane 14:03
Yeah, I mean, in the statistics back you up on that exact point, I saw that 72% of Gen Z says that seeing an influencer go somewhere makes them want to go to that place as well. So it’s just like you said, you see a famous person or something follow going somewhere on social media. You’re looking up how do I get there? How do I stay there? Like I mean, it is a huge part of deciding where to go on maybe your one year the trip, you know, yeah, definitely.
Nick Schlemmer 14:30
And then kind of the flip side of that is we talked about taking trips with friends but if you want to talk about a little bit about what we call solo trips.
Jack McFarlane 14:39
So this is this has kind of come out of left field are these Gen Z solo trips. And the theory is the pandemic being by yourself made people want to get out of town but it couldn’t be with a lot of people. So the solo trip started popping up and whole idea is to go somewhere with just yourself. Like go enjoy being with your Self, you’re gonna accompany having your own fun. Not to mention, I mean, a solo trip is cheaper? Yes, yes. Then planning for a family or a group of friends. Yeah, it is.
Nick Schlemmer 15:11
I don’t know about anybody else who’s been listening to the show. But me personally, I think about doing solo trips. I say all the time. Like, I think I could go there.
Jack McFarlane 15:21
What if I just got my car left?
Nick Schlemmer 15:24
Like, I’ve done one of those trips with a couple of my buddies to where the night before we said, we’re going to Florida. Let’s do it. The next morning, we got in the car, and we drove Florida. Like those things. It was it was the most I’ve ever had on a trip. Yeah, I feel like these solo trips is kind of the same concept. Right away, just you’re gone.
Jack McFarlane 15:44
Yeah. And that’s our last trend is the spontaneous trip. It’s not. You’re not planning this for six months to a year in advance. I mean, you’re it’s Friday night. You want to go to the beach Saturday morning? Sure. Let’s drive 500 miles and go to the beach and find somewhere to stay. I mean, it’s obviously exciting. Like, oh, you know, what are we going to get? Yeah, it is a huge way to travel now. So yeah, that kind of wraps up our top 10 Gen Z travel trends, keep an eye out for them and for new emerging ones. But I say we move right into our final segment of the day.
Nick Schlemmer 16:19
Our final segment of the show is early basketball predictions. It is March 1 at the time of recording this. So everybody knows what that means. I’m assuming your bonus. That means March Madness. Oh, yeah, we are here.
Jack McFarlane 16:35
It’s not only a tournament, it is a way of life. It is a holiday, a month long holiday, it is just some of the best sports that you can watch all year.
Nick Schlemmer 16:46
I couldn’t agree with that more. Whenever March Madness rolls around, people will not go to work. They’ll watch all day because there’s games going on all the time. If your team’s on that, that comes first. Yeah, if you’re a kid here, especially if you’re a college student, or in Alma Mater, or anything like that, or college, you’re watching your team. Oh, that’s number one on the list to do for the day.
Jack McFarlane 17:10
Yeah, so I mean, let’s just jump right into our predictions here. Tell me a little bit about maybe your early early predictions. Now keep in mind, we don’t know the seating, and how everything’s going and what the matchups are gonna look like. But what are some of your favorite teams that to win the whole tournament?
Nick Schlemmer 17:25
To win the whole tournament? So I have four of them listed here. I have Kansas, Alabama, Miami, and Houston. Now, I believe all of those teams are in the top 10. So I know that usually doesn’t happen. A lot of upsets happen in March. It’s true. And so a lot of these, maybe none of these teams might not even make it to elite eight or via or Yeah, that’d be my top form for years and years on our favor similar.
Jack McFarlane 17:55
Yeah. So my top four, I have Texas Longhorns. I think they’re you’re pretty far I believe they’re the sixth or seventh seed right now. UCLA, Purdue, and Tennessee. So my kind of theory behind it is I try not to pick the number one seed. So right now, it’d be Houston because I have done that in the past and been burned by the fire. It doesn’t usually work. Now. Let’s see.
Nick Schlemmer 18:20
It’s been a long time that they didn’t see this one. Yeah.
Jack McFarlane 18:23
I mean, I can’t remember if Gonzaga was one or two, and they want to so ongoing, but it is so hard to predict because of the upsets. It’s a winner go home. I mean, you look at UNBC as a 16 seed from maybe five years ago about this point. Just crazy. But they made it so far. You think of South Carolina Gamecocks we went to that final four just to see them play.
Nick Schlemmer 18:46
Yeah, shout out Steve Boese. Thanking Steve for that again.
Jack McFarlane 18:49
Yes. Let’s do it this year.
Nick Schlemmer 18:52
But yeah, talking about the one see, the one CD, you know, always gets paired up with lower seat in that lower seat playing in one seat. They have nothing to lose. Exactly. You’re gonna leave it all out on the floor. So that’s where March Madness comes into play where it is madness.
Jack McFarlane 19:08
Yeah. I mean, you’re supposed to lose by 30-50 points. If you go out there and lose, it’s like well, you’re a 16 seed.
Nick Schlemmer 19:15
Yeah, you’re supposed to live. Yeah. And once he’s playing the 20 seed, and all of a sudden, it’s once he’s beaten by 30. Yeah, like, where did that come from? Exactly. And that other team had nothing to lose. Yeah, they now they get to go on. And they just moved up their rankings.
Jack McFarlane 19:28
Yeah. But I mean, I guess before we jumped the gun on March Madness, the big tournament, let’s maybe talk about some of the the major conference championships coming up because it is, I believe, one more game for most teams. One or two more cards. Yeah. And then it’s tournament time, which is kind of a precursor to March Madness, because I mean, crazy upsets can still happen. Oh, in these conference tournaments, and a lot of these will play into the ceiling of the final tournament. That’s why it’s so hard to predict right now. But I mean, what are some of your thoughts on Well, let’s just go through the power five, five major conferences. Tell me some of your thoughts on who you think’s gonna win.
Nick Schlemmer 20:05
Yeah, so for the big 10 I’m feeling Indiana.
Jack McFarlane 20:09
Indiana. Yeah, I mean, they’ve been on fire this year.
Nick Schlemmer 20:12
They’ve won some big games. They also just lost high. So I have, I would honestly change it up. I’m saying Indiana slash Iowa. Because Iowa the first half of the season was kind of struggling. But now Indiana is ranked pretty highly so I believe, and I was not ranked at all and they just, they’re catching fire threat. Yes. They’re catching fire at the right time. For sure. In SEC, Alabama.
Jack McFarlane 20:38
Yep. That’s good. Yeah, that’s
Nick Schlemmer 20:41
the one pack Well, Arizona. ACC I have Miami. This is you, you Yep. I believe the ranked 16th or something like that right now. But they’ve been they’ve jumped up a lot here recently in the rankings. And then for the big 12 I have Kansas, Kansas is just one of those teams to where they are just dang good. Yeah, they’re gonna be there at the end of the year, they’re gonna be there. They’re gonna be in the tournament, and they’re gonna make a run.
Jack McFarlane 21:08
They’re not a three seed or better than their year was a disappointment.
Nick Schlemmer 21:12
They’re just like one of those teams to Where’s Oregon, Gonzaga, UNC, Duke, which Dukes not sadly not there anymore like that Duke and UNC have gone down. But Kansas is here to play can snap at their place. So going over that was mine. Want to hear yours?
Jack McFarlane 21:32
Yeah. So first, I’ll start with the big 10 as well. I’ve got Purdue I believe they’re actually like the highest rank. They might be a three seat right now overall, but they’re definitely the highest ranked in the big 10 I don’t see I will winning it. I gotta be honest. I mean, last year, I was really big on Iowa. And they really hurt me. Let me down so I can never see them again. Also go skers!
Nick Schlemmer 21:54
Nebraska fans here. Yep, we are from Nebraska.
Jack McFarlane 21:57
Yeah, he did say I was gonna win. I don’t know. I did say that. I don’t know what to say.
Nick Schlemmer 22:02
Cuz, you know, Nebraska doesn’t like Iowa. But yeah.
Jack McFarlane 22:06
And so in also Purdue is 13 and five in the conference. And I think when you have that good record in your conference, you know how to GamePlan for each each team. And I think Purdue will it’s just the best coach in the best well rounded team in the big 10 I see them winning it. For the SEC. I’ve got Texas a&m home of Johnny Football. You know, I don’t know if anyone remembers Johnny Manziel. But he’s he was the goat in college. That is terrible in the NFL anyway. Yeah, I’ve got them when the SEC they are 14 and three in the conference. And 22 and eight overall they I mean three losses in your conference and in the SEC mean REALLY good. You’ve got a good shot to win and they are a solid team and I don’t want to say they’re slaver. But I feel like with Alabama this year, no one is looking at Texas a&m.
Nick Schlemmer 22:55
No, I was gonna say I didn’t realize Texas, Texas a&m had such good revenues.
Jack McFarlane 23:00
Yeah, no, because Alabama it’s been the story of the year the football school that did awful in football, and it’s lighting up and basketball. I think everyone is jumping the gun on Bama. And it’s just one game. You know, it’s not it’s not the NBA. This isn’t the best of seven. I think maybe overall Alabama is the better team but I think Texas a&m will win it and bring it moving on to the PAC 12. I agree Arizona 13 And five of the conference in 24 and five overall. So they’ve actually only last conference games, which does scare me a bit. But I think down the stretch, they’re gonna be just fine. The ACC you had the you you had Miami. I’m going with NC State Wolfpack. Yeah, so they I mean, they started off the year. All right, not really making headlines. But recently they’ve they’ve been lining up, they’re moving up the rankings. I think they’re getting better with each game. I mean, they started slow and still finished 13 and six in the conference. I think that they’ve got the ball rolling, and it’s just going to snowball in a good way into the conference championship. And I think they’ll win. And then my final prediction, who would saw this coming one of my four for March Madness, Texas, hook em horns, let’s go for the big 1211 And five, not the greatest conference record, but still definitely respectable. And 22 And seven overall, I don’t know what it is. I just have this feeling about Texas. And I know you can’t base much off feeling. But I mean, they shoot the lights out. And they’re physical. And they are a solid all around team. And I really believe that they’ll win the big 12. And I mean, honestly, I think Texas might win the whole thing. They might be my number one pick him horns.
Nick Schlemmer 24:36
Yeah, that’s that’s a pretty bold predictions. I think we both have some bold predictions here on our list. And if anyone tuning in, we would love to hear what you guys think about our lists. And then potentially your list. Yeah, we’re here so your top three needs to win the whole March Madness tournament. Yeah, I’d say there’s so much focus on certain teams where I think this is a year of like you said, I think upsets are Gonna be offsets and or sleep routines per se, are gonna come into play and really make.
Jack McFarlane 25:05
Yeah, because I don’t know. I haven’t watched a lot of Houston this year, but they aren’t the number one, but I just have a feeling that there’s no clear number one there has been definitely a switch all yeah, there hasn’t been one team that has just done it all year.
Nick Schlemmer 25:18
Yeah, I mean, for for a while there. Number one was the big 10. And Purdue. Purdue was number one for a while and then all of a sudden, they started losing some games. Now they’re dropping down the rankings. It’s crazy how things can fluctuate in any sport, but especially in the March time basketball.
Jack McFarlane 25:34
I guess you could call it madness.
Nick Schlemmer 25:36
It is madness isn’t as well.
Jack McFarlane 25:39
It’s gonna be a fun month of basketball. And hopefully, I’m all correct. And Nick’s all wrong. That’s all I gotta say.
Nick Schlemmer 25:46
We will see looking forward to watching all the games. And guys, thank you for tuning in today. It’s been a great show, Jack I had a blast with you. And then you know the drill. We now have one of my ending segments of motivational quotes, the quote of the show. And for this one, I have a quote from Winston Churchill. “Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts.”
Jack McFarlane 26:13
And I think that’s a perfect way to end up our show today. Thank you guys so much for listening. We hope to see you guys later in the month. And yeah, this has been The Play by Play. Thank you.
Nick Schlemmer 26:22
Thank you and goodbye for now.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai
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