Just the Facts, Ma’am

When people know that you have your own business, they often get curious.  They want to know the facts about it. They want to know how well you are doing.  Perhaps they’d like to leave their dead-end job or stop wearing their suit and tie with corporate America.  You can tell them your facts, or you can divert their attention by telling them these unusual facts about other businesses out there.  Just remind them that all businesses started with one person and a compelling idea. Here are some facts you can tell.

Specifics about Businesses

Considering that each week you’ll find nearly 1/3rd of the population in the U.S. shopping at Walmart, it’s no wonder their average profit is $1.8 billion an hour! Now that’s Profit with a capital P! — The name “Yahoo” wasn’t based on the typical I-just-won-the-jackpot response.  It’s an acronym for Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle. Fancy that! — Speaking of names, did you know the name for Google was originally BackRub! Hmm. What a switch! — Everyone has heard of UPS with their package delivery trucks all over the place. Few know, though, that UPS was founded by two teenagers with a bicycle and $100 of borrowed money.  Talk about wise entrepreneurs! 

Talk about entrepreneurs, were you aware the 70% of small businesses are still in operation for two years, 50% celebrate their 5th anniversary, 33% are hard at work after 10 years, and 25% after 15 years?  Not only that, but since 1990, 4 million people working for large companies got a pink slip and had to look elsewhere for work. Small businesses, though, have created 8 million new jobs.  Now that’s a fact worth sharing!

Specifics about Products

White writing on a red background – Coca Cola’s logo is known by 94% of this planet’s population.  Talk about brand recognition! — Did you know that cereal – breakfast cereal! – is the second only to automobiles when it comes to advertising on TV?  — Have you sung “Happy Birthday” to anyone lately?  Warner Music actually owns the copyright to that song, so perhaps we ought to pay royalties every time we sing that song.  Thankfully they aren’t out to collect the royalties! — What do you think the best-selling product of all time?  Hint: the iPhone is second. If you guessed Rubrik’s cube, you were right! 

This may be hard for you to believe.  It’s the Volkswagen group that owns the posh cars:  Bentley, Lamborghini, Audi, and Porsche! Ha! Literally the “car for the people” – go Beetle Bug go! —   Now that’s a fact worth sharing!

Specifics about People

First of all, did you know that Tuesday is the most productive work day?  If that’s the case, too bad we didn’t just start the work week with Tuesday! — This will amaze you. If Bill Gates happened to be a country – he’d be the 37th richest country in the world! — In Albuquerque, New Mexico, there’s a popular restaurant that serves breakfast and lunch and hugs.  Hugs? The owner of Tim’s Place has Down’s Syndrome, and he thinks hugs should be served with every meal. — Speaking of breakfast, Robert Chesebrough not only invented Vaseline, but he ate a spoonful of it every day. Eyuk! He lived to be 96.  Hmm….

Before his death, Ingvar Kamprad, Swedish founder of furniture store IKEA, was one of the top 10 richest in the world.  What’s surprising is that with all of that money earned, he lived in a small home, rode the bus, and ate at the local IKEA Restaurant. Wonder what IKEA means?  The word is formed by these initials: Ingvar – Kamprad – Elmtaryd (the family farm) – and, Agunnaryd (the village of his boyhood).  

Now here’s a fact that you might find sobering – or encouraging.  If you have $10 in your pocket and no debts, you are wealthier than 25% of the folks around you.  Now that’s a fact worth sharing!

So when people ask you for specifics about your business, you have three options:  you can tell them facts about yours, you can tell them facts about others, or you can switch the topic to the weather.  

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