The Art of Giving Entrepreneurial Success Edition SEPTEMBER 2010
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The Art of Giving What You Don`t Have The Art of Giving What You Don't Have What if we were to discover something very strange what if we discovered that all our giving, our kindness and charity, had come from a place of lack and misunderstanding? The time of giving and love is upon us, and it's natural for the world to be buzzing about the beauty of giving. But this post is a little different. It's about giving, yes, but not just the common misunderstanding.
did a widow who had given her last copper coins to the church treasury. Wasn't she displaying true compassion, I thought, giving everything she had? “How blind, unwise, and of a narrow mind I was,” said Nicolae in his essay. “How could He have called us to actions so simple, so of this world, that is, so possible!” Giving our entirety is not enough it is too
What do I mean? For many, Christmas is about stress, fatigue, finding the right presents, endless parties and functions. For others, Christmas is loneliness, made worse by the fact that others are celebrating.
“How could such a man be accepted into a monastery?” one might think. But the abbot replies, “What does that have to do with anything? You have no faith, have no light; giving them to others you will have them, too. Searching them for another, you will gain them for yourself. Your brother, your neighbour and fellow man, him you are duty bound to help with what you do not have.” And with that, he accepts the man into the monastery. “Go, your cell is on this hallway, third door on the right.” The thoughts of this man are echoed in the minds of many men and women around the world. I have neither faith, nor essence, nor courage. I cannot be of any help to myself. How do we develop these things?
And many people yell back “This is not the true spirit of Christmas! Christmas is about giving, about love!” And what is the true spirit of giving? I was humbled to find out that even my definition of giving was wrong.
How, indeed? The abbot's answer: Giving another that which you do not have faith, love, confidence, hope you will acquire them as well.
The true spirit of giving A few weeks ago, a reader sent me an old essay by a Christian monk named Nicolae Steinhardt. I read it and enjoyed it very much at that time, but the full impact only hit me when I sat down to write about it.
The economy of the heart
I cannot explain it any better than he can; all I can do is rewrite it with a modern eye.
simple. We are asked something entirely different: to give what we do not have.
I was not foolish and unknowing enough to believe that Christ asks us to give from our surplus… I was however unskilled and lost in the darkness enough to think what seems entirely in accord with Christian teaching that we are asked to give from the little we have, if not even from the very little.
The man who did not have
This hit me square in the face. We all know that giving from our surplus, giving a fraction of what we have, is not a sign of a big heart. But the common interpretation is give all we have, that is true compassion! And I had fallen into the exact trap he had, I had even referred to the same parable he
help to myself, much less to any others; I have nothing.
Nicolae tells a story of a man who sought entry into a monastery, although he didn't feel qualified. The man approached the abbot, and confessed: Know, Father, that I have neither faith nor light, nor essence, nor courage, nor trust in myself, and I cannot be of any
The economy of the external world, the exchanging of money and material goods, is simple. Give, and hope to get something back. Simple mathematics your wallet gets lighter as you give. But the economy of our heart is different, it is the direct opposite. The more you give, the more you have!
“Happiness is not so much in having or sharing. We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” - By Norman MacEwan
This cannot be doubted; you must have experienced it for yourself. The smallest example is enough: when you play with a small child, and you laugh, and you give, and you kiss you must have felt the love
but I can speak of the opposite. If your thoughts are always on lack of respect, love, money, whatever it is then it will always be a part of who you are.
within grow stronger. There is an excerpt from Publisher's Weekly:
Believing that your needs are not met, believing that you don't have something that thought will sabotage everything, even if opportunity comes knocking.
In May 2001, in a laboratory at the University of Wisconsin, a Tibetan Buddhist monk donned a cap studded with hundreds of sensors that were connected to a state-of-the-art EEG, a brain-scanning device capable of recording changes in his brain with speed and precision. When the monk began meditating in a way that was designed to generate compassion, the sensors registered a dramatic shift to a state of great joy. â€œThe very act of concern for others' well-being, it seems, creates a greater state of well-being within oneself,â€? writes bestselling author Goleman (Emotional Intelligence) in his extraordinary new work. The state of abundance And what of the external world? Anyone who has been in the world of personal development will have heard of all the metaphysical laws that have gained popularity recently.
When I was younger, I was extremely shy. I didn't think that I deserved love, respect, or even a quality girlfriend. And because of that, whenever a girl would confess their feelings for me, I would sabotage the budding relationship unknowingly in one way or the other. Immediately my thoughts would jump to: Maybe she wants to use me. Maybe she is just lonely. Maybe this, maybe that. And this carried over to money and business. I had lost many lucrative contracts and offers because of the way I thought. Eckhart Tolle put it succinctly in A New Earth: Whatever you think the world is withholding from you, you are withholding from the world. Deep down inside you think you are small and that you have nothing to give. And if you don't give, you don't receive. How do I give what I lack? Steinhardt's essay continues:
I just said that your wallet gets lighter as you give. On the physical level, that cannot be disputed. But what if there is more? This is something I've always hesitated to write on, as I can never find solid proof of this it is just book knowledge.
Let him not worry, not fear, not be anxious, the monk who feels his innerself deserted, haunted by lack of belief and weakness, full of darkness and aridness; let him not mind these in the least.
The classic success literatures, Think and Grow Rich, and the Science of Getting Rich, are based on one rule: Your inner world reflects the outer. Hold an abundant mindset, act abundantly, think abundantly. Believe you are rich now, and one day your external world will match it.
Don't fear your lack. Acknowledge it, yes. This is not asking you to pretend, this is not asking you to act as if you were cold in the middle of a burning summer. The problem lies when we sit down and we despair, when we think it is a permanent condition.
The state of lack
Give out whatever you think people are withholding from you. And soon after you start giving, you will start receiving.
What you think about will determine your reality. I can't speak for material riches,
This can be hard, Tolle acknowledges. So simply acknowledge the abundance that is already in your life. See the fullness of life all around you. Be grateful for it. The
warmth of the sun on your skin, the magnificent display of flowers. The rain drenching you from the skies. Nature is abundant, we just have to open our eyes to see it. Build your inner mind in this fashion, and let your life change to match. Let the weak, thus, say: give me, Lord, when I am lost and naked, strength and impudence to be able to give from what I do not have. Link Love Lyman Reed runs creating a Better Life. What I love about this blog is the honesty and the writing style. In his latest post, 6 Components of the Certain Way to Getting Rich, he discusses the same abundance principles we discussed in this post. Next up, are Puran and Susanna Bair. They publish a meditation book, named Energize your Heart, and a similarly named blog. It's got lots of free material in there, and I'm working my way through the review copy of the book they sent me. A scientific approach to what is often a spiritual topic, it looks great so far. Lastly is Swami Tarakananda, from the Hindu blog The Atma Jyoti Blog. Lots of insightful commentaries, not only on enlightenment and yoga, but on the other religions, as well! A recent example would be The Imperishable Thinker.
The first thing I saw was a teara huge, unforgettable tear in the big brown eye of a ten-year-old girl. Then I saw tears in her mother's eyes. And in all these tears, just enough joy was mixed with pain to underscore that pain's severity: their joy at seeing him, their three-month-old brother and son, and their intense pain that it was the first time they'd seen him since he was just two days old, when they'd kissed him goodbye. I sensed in those tears the ache that he, flesh of their flesh, was being brought to them for a brief visit by two strangers who were now his parents, and the affliction of knowing that the joy of loving him as a mother and sister would never be theirs. The joy and the pain of those tears led me to a repentance of sorts. My image of mothers who put their children for adoption, though not as bad as that of the fathers involved, was not exactly positive either. I could not shake the feeling that there was something deficient in such an act. The taint of abandonment marred it,
an abandonment that could be understandable and certainly was tragic, but abandonment nonetheless. To give one's child to another, it had seemed to me, was to fail in the most proper duty of a parent: to love no matter what. As I was reflecting on those tears, I came across a passage in Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics. “Witness the pleasure that mothers take in loving their children. Some mothers put their infants out to nurse, and though knowing and loving them do not ask to be loved by them in return, if it be impossible to have this as well, but are content if they see them prospering; they retain their own love for them even though the children, not knowing them, cannot render them any part of what is due to a mother.” The text comes from Aristotle's discussion of friendship. He used the example of mothers to make plausible that “in its essence friendship seems to consist more in giving than receiving affection.” For Aristotle, a “birth mother” would manifest the kind of love characteristic of a true friend, a love exercised for that friend's sake, not for benefits gained from the relationship.
“It is hard to know that you have a child in the world, far away from you,” wrote Nathanael's birth mother in her first letter to us. It is hard because love passionately desires the presence of the beloved. Yet it was that same love that took deliberate and carefully planned steps that would lead to his absence. In a letter she wrote for him to read when he grows up, she told him that her decision to put him up for adoption was made for his own good. “I did it for you,” she wrote repeatedly, adding, “Some day you will understand.” She loved him for his own sake, and therefore she would rather have suffered his absence if he flourished than have enjoyed his presence if he languished; her sorrow over his avoidable languishing would overshadow her delight in his presence. For a lover, it is more blessed to give than to receive, even when giving pierces the lover's heart. My image of birth mothers has changed: “She who does not care quite enough” has become
“she who selflessly gives.” When we parted, a smile had replaced the tears on the face of our son's birth mother. Now it was my turn to cry. Back at home, with him in one arm and an open album she made for him in the other, I shed tears over the beauty and the tragedy of her love. About three months earlier, the most extraordinary thing had happened on an ordinary day in an ordinary maternity ward between three ordinary human beings. After chatting with us for half an hour or soto assure herself once again that we were the right parents for her childNathanael's birth mother called the nurse and asked her to bring in her twoday-old baby. There he was, wonderful to the point of tears, rolled in to us in a crib. She took him and held him for a while in her arms, in a last maternal embrace. Then she handed him over to my wife, Judy. In one simple act, painfully sad for her and wonderfully joyful for us, she gave him to us, and she gave us to him. She gave us that most incredible gift at about 11 o'clock one beautiful March morning. Just one hour earlier, a man in a dark uniform wearing dark sunglasses had given us something entirely different. He had appeared at the window on the driver's side of my
car. As I rolled it down, my ears were still ringing with the ominous, evenly paced sound of his boots hitting the pavement. “Driver's license and insurance card!” I still did not know what I had done to be stopped by the police. Even when I had first seen the flashing red and blue lights behind me, I had been puzzled. Then, as he paced back to his car, it dawned on me. We had stopped at a doughnut place at an intersection to get a quick bite in place of the breakfast we had missed. After finding out that a child would be given to us, we had had only 24 hours to get our nest ready, and we had stayed up until four o'clock in the morning trying to name our boy. From the parking lot in front of the doughnut place, I had not seen that the street to our right was one-way. After a bite and a sip of coffeetired, excited, and a bit bewildered about what was to happenI drove out onto that one-way street the wrong way and positioned myself to turn right toward the hospital. Right in front of me, on the other side of the intersection, was a police car. Soon the siren was on,
and I was pulled over. Not knowing that in the U.S. you aren't supposed to get out of the car to talk to a police officer, I opened my door, took one step, and said, “Mr. Officer, we've just had this wonderful news…” I was interrupted in mid sentence. “Get back into your car!” he barked at me. I tried one more time: “May I explain…” Again, I was interrupted by that same bark, more irritated this time: “Get back into your car, I said!” Clad in a uniform, with his eyesthose windows of the soulhidden behind dark shades, he was all power, all law, all business. His humanity? Locked up somewhere deep inside, underneath the shiny police belt buckle. His generosity? Hidden behind the badge of office. Within the space of one hour, I got a nasty ticket from a gruff cop, and a tender child from a loving birth mother.
I don't expect police officers to give out candy for traffic violations. But even in the old communist Yugoslavia where I grew up, usually you could talk to traffic police like human beings. Maybe my experience on the streets of Southern California was an exception. But it fits into a larger pattern of what we may call the gracelessness that is slowly spreading like a disease throughout many of our cultures. Some may suggest that we are no worse off today than we were 50 years or even two centuries ago. My sense is that we are. But my main point is not to note a decline, but to name a problem. We live in a culture in which, yes, extraordinary generosity does happen. But at the same time, that culture is largely stripped of grace. It's not a gracelessness that's necessarily apparent at first glance, but it nonetheless underlies so many of our interactions. If I were to say that today everything is sold and nothing is given, that would be an exaggeration. But like any good caricature, it distorts reality in order to draw attention to what is characteristic. Mainly, we're set up to sell and buy, not give and receive. We tend to give nothing free of charge and receive nothing free of charge. “The person who volunteers time, who helps a stranger, who agrees to work for a modest wage out of commitment to the public good, who desists from littering even when no one is looking … begins to feel like a sucker,” wrote Robert Kuttner in “Everything for Sale.” To give is to lose. It's not just that we are calculating rather than generous. In buying and selling, we are often not even fair. “You don't get what you deserve; you get what you negotiate,” the saying goes. With only our own interest in mind, we try to squeeze the last drop out of those with whom we are dealing. Far too often, powernot fairness and certainly not generosityis the name of the game. We assert ourselves and our own interests through raw physical strength, political connections, or loads of cash, through sexual prowess, sarcastic comments, lies and half-truths, through anything that can serve as a weapon in this low-grade war called life. We fight, and we often take spoils or go away defeated. Whether in business, politics, family, or education, the big fish eat the little ones. Laws and regulations do limit excessive abuse. But laws and
regulations only mark the space in which the war is waged. They don't eliminate the war. Loss of generosity doesn't just leave us sexually unfulfilled and in search of pleasures that are ever more intense but never truly satisfying. Left unchecked, the slide away from generosity ultimately robs us of significant cultural achievements on which our flourishing, as individuals and communities, depends. Let's consider just a few of the losses a lack of generosity can put into motion. Without generosity, our economic system would falter and the exchange of goods and services could easily become unsustainable exploitation of the poor by the rich. Without generosity, our democratic political system would decay, and powerful interest groups would likely exclude much of the electorate from participation and rule them to their detriment. Without generosity, our educational system couldn't be sustained; nothing can secure the services of good teachers who are, by definition, neither sellers nor takers but givers who cannot be bought even if they do get paid. The list could go on. A “rose” from Antoine de SaintExupéry's “The Little Prince” reminds us of a more personal kind of loss that comes from a lack of generosity, an intimate loss that, at the same time, is a loss of a whole world of meaning. From the star where he tended three volcanoes and a single rose, the little prince found his way to Earth, where thousands of roses can be found in people's gardens. “People where you live,” the little prince said to his pilot friend, “grow five thousand roses in one garden … yet they don't find what they're looking for… And yet what they're looking for could be found in a single rose”… And he added, “But eyes are blind. You have to look with the heart.” Yet to find that for which you are searching in a single rose is more than just a matter of looking with the heart. For the heart to see rightly, the hand needs to give generously. That's the deeper wisdom the
little prince goes on to reveal. His mysterious affair with the rose began when he responded to the rose's simple request, “Would you be so kind as to tend to me?” The gift of care made it his rose, the only one in the whole world. “It's the time you spent on your rose that makes your rose so important,” the wise fox told him. Take that gift away, and the one special rose blends into 100,000 other roses, beautiful and interesting for a while, but, in the long run, ordinary and even boring. The gift of care didn't just transform the rose, however. When the little prince looked up to the stars above the Earth, they shone in a new way because on one of them he had left behind the rose he loved. It cast a spell over the whole heavenly firmament, like a buried treasure casts a spell on all the islands where you think it may lie hidden. That one rose changed his whole world. And what did his unfaltering loyalty to a flower do to him? It gave him a new radiance, a halo, invisible but palpable. “The image of the rose [is] shining within him like a flame within a lamp, even when he's asleep,” said the pilot. He was a boy in love, vibrating with desire and yet strangely at rest. He had found what he was looking for. "Freedom and love go together. Love is not a reaction. If I love you because you love me, that is mere trade, a thing to be bought in the market; it is not love. To love is not to ask anything in return, not even to feel that you are giving something- and it is only such love that can know freedom." ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti
Selling the Fountain of Youth By Arlene Weintraub on a cover story Weintraub wrote for this magazine in 2006, traces the antiaging industry from its salad days in the early '90s to its $88 billion-a-year present. Weintraub chronicles pharmacists mixing up their own concoctions in back rooms, battles between drug companies and large corporations, and the reincarnation of Somers as a poster girl for endless youth. Along the way, she shows how one absurd promisethe ability to stave off the aging processbecame a multibillion-dollar marketing ploy that, according to most business measurements, worked like a charm.
Has the image of Suzanne Somers having sex at age 94 ever crossed your mind? While it's unusual for people just shy of triple digits to wake up every morning thinking about how healthy and strong their bodies feel, and proceed to engage in "wonderful sex with [their] 105 year-old husband[s]," that's what Somers, now 63, sees in her future. Could that be your future, too? Of course! All you have to do is suspend any disbelief that the actress and former Thigh master shill isn't an expert on the inner workings of the body. Then banish all doubt about the soundness of the medical advice she's repeating, and put you on a daily hormone regimen of over 60 supplements, creams, and injections. If that's a lot to process, don't worry: It's all laid out in Somers' manifesto, Breakthrough, which spent nearly four months on the New York Times advice books best-seller list. The tome doesn't put much stock in the fact that, according to some doctors, such a regimen may make your hair fall out, require an organ to be removed (admit it: that gallbladder was just taking up space), or leave you susceptible to depression and even cancer. But why should it? We're talking about an opportunity to get carded at a bar seven decades past your 21st birthday. If you're looking for a more reliable guide to the anti-aging revolution, consider Arlene Weintraub's selling the Fountain of Youth: How the Anti-Aging Industry Made a Disease out of Getting OldAnd Made Billions. The book, which is based
The anti-aging phenomenon started off with understandable intentions. Baby boomers were getting older and didn't like what they saw or how they felt. So when a study was printed in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1990 positing that human growth hormone (HGH), previously used to treat growth disorders in children, could be used on healthy adults to "reverse aging," people took noteand many latched on like junkies. In 1993 a number of doctors, notably osteopaths Ronald Klatz and Robert Goldman, began injecting themselves (forget mice) with HGH. After they observed, among other outcomes, decreases in body fat and increases in energy, the cat was out of the bag. Paying no attention to a medical Establishment that saw HGH as exceedingly dangerous and unresearched, they and countless imitators opened clinics around the country where patients could pay thousands of dollars to learn how to inject themselves with HGH. If hormones were bad for you or caused cancer, the duo argued, all teenagers would be deadtwisting logic in such a way it's unclear whether they were intellectually dishonest, stupid, or thought their clients just didn't care. Regardless, many didn't . Klatz and Goldman launched a "medical society" called the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M), whose mission it became to promote HGH and certify doctors in this exciting and lucrative new field. Soon after, they were holding annual conferences in Vegas, charging $4,000 for procedures mainstream science deemed faulty and
recommending diets of hormones to replace those gone "missing" during the aging process. While it may not have been good science, it was good business. A4M was hardly the first association to market the fountain of youth, but by making the unattainable seem accessible, it paved the way for successive companies & mdashand entire industriesto offer their own dose of the same promise. Supermarket aisles now teem with bottles adorned with the words "anti-aging;" second-tier produce like pomegranate and acai have become "super fruits" and the foundation of their own billion-dollar businesses. For men fearing the onset of "male menopause," anti-aging hormones and over-thecounter antidotes like Viagra and Cialis have helped assuage millions of midlife crises. Even Botox (one of the movement's own creations) descended the age curve from being a subplot on Sex & the City to one on The Hills. And this is to say nothing of the spate of advice books. PONCE DE LEONS OF THE 21ST CENTURY The anti-aging business has grown into an $88 billion annual industry with a multitude of beneficiaries BodyLogicMD: The network for "bio identical hormone replacement doctors" was founded in 2003 by twins Paul and Patrick Savage after Paul lost nearly 90 pounds via hormone injections. It now oversees more than 40 practices. Resveratrol: Hollywood (Fla.)-based FWM Laboratories began offering free trials of the drug but insidiously signed people up to receive automatic shipments for around $80 a month and made it virtually impossible to cancel. Suzanne Somers: The former sitcom actress and home fitness guru capitalized on the anti-aging revolution with her books The Sexy Years, Ageless: The Naked Truth about Bio identical Hormones, and Breakthrough. MonaVie: Founded in 2005, the company sells a dark purple drink made with the acai berry for more than $40 that, it says, promotes overall health and longevity. In 2009 founder Dallin Larsen claimed $1 billion in sales.
Nike - Philip Knight's Famous Entrepreneur Like Fred Smith and the origins of FedEx, Philip Knight's first ideas of what would become Nike Inc. came to him while he was at school. While working on his master's at Stanford, Knight - an accomplished runner during his undergraduate days at the University of Oregon - wrote an essay that outlined a plan to overcome the monopoly Adidas had on the running shoe market. He thought the way to realize this was to employ cheap Japanese labour to make a shoe both better and cheaper. The plan was put into action shortly after graduating in 1962. Knight went to Japan to meet with the executives of Onitsuka Tiger Co., a manufacturer of imitation Adidas runners, claiming to be the head of a company called Blue Ribbon Sports (which did not exist, except in his mind). Knight convinced Tiger to export their shoes to the States though Blue Ribbon and had them send samples so his associates could inspect them. Knight paid for the samples with money from his father. He sent a few pairs to Bill Bower man, Knight's track coach from his days at the University of Oregon, who became interested in the venture. Knight and Bower man became partners and put $500 each into the purchase of 200 pairs of Tigers. Blue Ribbon Sports was formed, and Knight began going to high school track and field events selling the shoes from the trunk of his car. Sales were at $3 million dollars when Knight chose to dissolve the partnership with Tiger in the early 1970s. Blue Ribbon began producing its own line and
began selling its Nike line (named after the Greek goddess of victory) in 1972. These first Nike shoes were adorned with the now-internationally recognizable swoosh logo - which Knight had commissioned for $35 - and had the traction-improving "waffle soles", conceived of by Bower man while watching his wife using a waffle iron. Building An Empire Blue Ribbon's success (renamed Nike in
1978) throughout the 1970s and into the '80s can largely be attributed to Knight's marketing strategy. He thought it best not to push his Nike shoes though
advertising, but rather to let expert athletes endorse his product. Fortune smiled on Knight as his partner Bill Bower man became the coach of the American Olympic team and many of the best performers on the team decided to shod their feet with Nikes. Of course, when the runners performed well, the shoes they wore were highlighted. Steve Prefontaine, a brash and unconventional American record-holder, became the first
spokesperson for Nike shoes. After the tennis player John McEnroe hurt his ankle, he began wearing a Nike three-quarter-top shoe, and sales of that particular brand jumped from 10,000 pairs to over 1 million. As Knight had hoped, celebrity athlete's endorsements brought success to the company. Knight also capitalized on a jogging craze, and through clever marketing persuaded the
consumer that they should only be wearing the best the best in the world. Through Problems and Controversy Sales dropped 18% between 1986 and 1987 as Reebok's trendy, stylish aerobics shoes came to be in high demand. Knight had to acknowledge that the technical achievements of the Nike shoe would not satisfy those who placed appearance above performance. The Nike Air was Knight's response to Reebok. It revived sales and put Nike back in the number one spot in 1990. Corporate Monster that it had become, Nike was the object of public outrage in 1990 when stories of teenagers killed for their Nikes began floating around. It was believed that Nike was promoting their shoes too forcefully. That same year Jesse Jackson attacked Nike for not having any African-Americans on its board or among its vice-presidents, despite the fact that its customer base was in large part black. Jackson's Nike boycott lasted until a black board member was appointed. There has also been a controversy around whether Knight's use of Asian factory workers as cheap labour s exploitative. Through all of the bad press that has been foisted on Nike through these events, Nike shoes have continued to sell well. And in 1993, The Sporting News voted Knight "the most powerful man in sports" though he was neither a player nor a manager. Knight's marketing mastery is to be lauded and regarded as a major factor in his impressive successes.
JUST DO IT
The Last Typewriter Repairman
Every business day, as he has done for the past 49 years, Paul Schweitzer, 69, travels the streets and skyscrapers of Manhattan making "house" calls, carrying his black leather tool bag by his side. Schweitzer, who insists on wearing a suit and tie while on his rounds, is one of the last of his kind: the typewriter repairman. In 1932, Schweitzer's father opened Gramercy Typewriter in Manhattan, selling and repairing typewriters. "At one time, there were millions of typewriters in the city," says Schweitzer, who began working for the family business in 1959 and took it over when his father retired in 1975. "You would go in an office and there were a hundred desks and each one had a typewriter," he says. Over the years, Gramercy earned a reputation for quick repairs and excellent customer service. The elder Schweitzer gave out wooden rulers that bore the company's name and logo as advertising. The shop's client base spanned from the tip of Wall Street up to the top of Harlem.
had made the typewriter obsolete. A number of Gramercy's competitors went out of business. "When I started, the Yellow Pages had six pages of typewriter repairmen, today there is maybe half a page," says Schweitzer. "If an office had 200 typewriters, now they had 40," he says. Although the number of machines continued to dwindle, "They still needed repairs." Gramercy gained business as other repairmen shuttered their shops.
selling typewriters online. Schweitzer also says that many of the offices he services still use the old machines for certain kinds of documents and customers still stop in his shop throughout the week. On a recent afternoon, an older gentlemen trudged up to the fourth floor of Gramercy to explain that his IBM Selectric was broken and inquired whether it could be fixed. Another recent customer was an artist who created an entire art exhibition using a manual Royal typewriter from the 1930s and in doing so ended up busting the star key.
While Schweitzer carried on, he noticed that most of the offices that he serviced were purchasing Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) laser printers along with their computers. Recognizing that those printers would break down and need repairs, Schweitzer took Hewlett-Packard-sponsored training courses to learn how to fix the machines and added that to the firm's service menu. Before long, he included fax machine repairs as well. As Schweitzer made his rounds, he informed customers that he was also available to repair these office staples. Schweitzer, who to this day has never owned a computer or used e-mail, says diversifying has allowed his company to retain a good number of its clients, with
These days Schweitzer spends most of his mornings doing house calls. By noon he returns to his shop and eats lunch, and if there are no more office stops to make, he dons a blue apron and works on typewriters in the back-room workshop, then knocks off around 4:30. There, the walls are lined with old IBM Selectrics and boxes stacked with parts and ribbons. Scattered about are a handful of old Underwood, Corona, and Royal manual typewriters from the 1920s and '30s. The work he does on typewriters now consists mostly of chemical washings and replacing parts like keys, feet, and ribbons from hard-to-find manufacturers.
SURVIVING THE IBM SELECTRIC The Schweitzers were quick to adapt to changes. The first big one came in 1961, when IBM (IBM) introduced the Selectric typewriter. The Selectric used a typeball that could be changed to display different fonts. The ball replaced the traditional pivoting type bars and the need for a moving carriage with a paper roller. Gramercy, like every other repair shop, had to learn how to fix and overhaul the new machines. Aside from new iterations of the Selectric, for the next 30 years, the typewriter business remained relatively steady. Then came the introduction of the personal computer in the 1980s. Gradually, businesses began replacing their typewriters with desktop computers. By the early 1990s, the shift practically
Schweitzer says he continues to run his business because he enjoys it. He says walking up and down subway stairs carrying his 30-plus-pound tool bag has kept him fit throughout the years. Not ready to retire, Schweitzer still takes enormous pride in being able to bring old machines back to life. Recently, he overhauled a broken 1920s-era Underwood that a customer wanted restored to working order as a birthday present for her husband. "HANGING IN THEREâ€?
about 75% of the business now involving printer repairs. N E W I N T E R E S T I N TYPEWRITERS Despite these dramatic shifts, Schweitzer insists there is a surge of interest among young people who have found their parents and grandparents' old typewriters in basements and attics and have taken to the machines. At the same time, he says a market has developed around buying and
Although he hopes to pass the business on to his son, Justin, Schweitzer has been around long enough to know another shift or two is ahead. "I'm thinking, what is the next thing after printers?" he says. "Maybe they will be voice-activated? Or maybe people will get so disgusted with the breakdowns and failures they'll go back to IBM typewriters. I'm waiting to see what happens next. We're hanging in there."
Prof V Chandrasekar ed - Wadhwani Centre for Entrepreneurship Development, ISB.
e says entrepreneurs are the same all over the world. He was speaking at the backdrop of TiEISB Connect 2007 in an interview with Contributing Editor Shobha Warrier. Chandrasekar has taught at the Indian Institute of Management-Bangalor , Indian Institute of Science, University of Colorado, University of Denver, the University of Central Florida, Orlando, Queen Margaret College, Scotland, and ESSEC Business School at Cergy, France. He is the executive director of the Wadhwani Centre for Entrepreneurship Development at the Indian School of Business. The WCED is one of the first centres of excellence established at the ISB. TiE-ISB Connect is a joint initiative of the Hyderabad chapter of The IndUS Entrepreneurs and The Wadhwani Centre for Entrepreneurship Development at the Hyderabad-based Indian School of Business. The event aims at bringing together aspiring entrepreneurs, start-ups and growth-stage entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, successful entrepreneurs and academicians on a common platform to interact and help build successful enterprises. During his interview, Chandrasekhar spoke about last year's event which saw about 40 venture capitalists, angel investors and private equity funds participating across the globe, along with 30 successful entrepreneurs. The event was held at the ISB Campus, Hyderabad. Excerpts of the interview: How successful was last year's entrepreneurial meet at ISB? The last year's TiE-ISB Connect held from September 20 to 22 was attended by 600 delegates, 200 Business Plans submitted, attended by 150 entrepreneurs and 50 VCs. The event was very successful in bringing the entrepreneurs and VCs on a platform for matching their mutual interest. How many ideas were presented and
how many entrepreneurs got nod from the Vcs? About 40 selected business plans were presented to VCs covering different industry segments. About 10 per cent of the companies got VC traction and 15 per cent found advisors and alliance partners and many more were able to fast track their business strategy. Were the entrepreneurs all from India? Or were there people from outside India too? The participating entrepreneurs were mostly from India As the executive director of WCED, are you satisfied with the quality of ideas that were presented l a s t y e a r ? In entrepreneurship, it is very difficult to say which ideas will succeed. Therefore, it is a challenge for us to select the best of the business plans. However, we make all the plans available to VCs or funders, whether we select them or not. How do you rate Indians as entrepreneurs? Entrepreneurs are the same all over the world. The same grit, determination and commitment to succeed are needed. Sometimes, some cultural factors may play a role in hindering development of entrepreneurship but they are more relevant for groups than for countries. Is India ready for entrepreneurs? Many Indian entrepreneurs who have gone to the US and started ventures say that US is more open to new ideas. Do you feel so? Government policies and societal approach to support failing entrepreneurs are definitely more favourable in the US. But successful entrepreneurship has a lot to do with robust growth and changing market economy. This is what is happening in India. Therefore, you will see more Indian entrepreneurs in future. What has to change to let India have more entrepreneurs?
India needs to do the following for promoting entrepreneurial ventures. Entrepreneurship needs to be taught in schools and colleges. Free exchange of ideas and creation of suitable eco-system are needed to transform these ideas into s u c c e s s f u l v e n t u r e s . Graduates need to be given incentives by government agencies to start their ventures. Government policies to create suitable eco-system have to be evolved -- these include changes in labour laws, company l a w a n d t a x a t i o n . Financial institutions need to undergo c h a n g e s . E v e n t o d a y, f i n a n c i a l institutions demand collateral for granting loans to small and micro entrepreneurs. This can be tackled by changing government regulations and by evolving suitable methods for hedging risks by insurance policies. At the Anna University, (former President) Dr A P J Abdul Kalam urged the students to be employmentgenerat0rs and not employmentseekers. Is the atmosphere in India right for that? Dr Kalam's wish is more possible today than ever before mainly because at present there is no dearth of jobs. Time is just right to tell the graduates to take the plunge. For, if they fail, they can always get jobs.
David Nilssen co-founder and CEO of Guidant Financial Group Inc.
uidant helps aspiring entrepreneurs to invest their retirement funds into a business or franchise without taking a taxable distribution or incurring penalties. A strong believer in broad diversification and hands-on investing, Nilssen is regularly invited to speak at top venues throughout the country as a leading expert in alternative small business financing. Along with his 100+ employees, Nilssen has helped nearly 6,000 individuals use their retirement funds to invest in alternative assets. Under his leadership, Guidant was named the 6th fastest growing company in WA, and is currently known as the largest provider in the franchise financing industry. Its success has earned the company top national and regional recognition, including: U.S. Chamber of Commerce Blue Ribbon Small Business (2007 & 2008); Bellevue Chamber of Commerce Eastside Small Business of the Year (2007); Washington CEO Magazine Best Companies to Work For (2007 & 2008); and U.S. Chamber of Commerce NW Small Business of the Year (2007). In 2008, his firm was included on the Inc. 500 list (#384). An avid investor himself, Nilssen has purchased millions of dollars in real estate and helped to initiate many businesses within the service industry, including a real estate agency/property management firm and real estate development company. Nilssen, and his company, have been highlighted in media sources such as CNBC, Fortune Magazine, The Los Angeles Times and The Wall Street Journal. Adam: What is the start-up story behind your business venture? David: I was developing real estate in Bremerton, Wash., in 2002. The market was prime! That year, a friend introduced me to a real estate broker from Bellevue, Wash., who had built a business around helping investors find both speculative and income producing properties. Soon after meeting, we decided to work together on a major real estate project one that required more capital than we had. When we asked our attorney for her advice on raising additional funds, she suggested we look
at self-directed IRAs as a potential source of investment capital. Although it was still a fairly new concept to her, she explained that one could actually invest their retirement assets in real estate without taking a taxable distribution or incurring penalties. I specifically remember looking across the table at my business partner and thinking “What?!” If that was true, I could see it being huge for my real estate development business. That meeting with our attorney launched a frustrating research and development project. It was frustrating because there were only a handful of companies that provided “real estate IRAs” and they all had different interpretations of the laws, their fees were expensive, and their processes were slow and complicated. After some heavy duty research and paperwork, we finally got a handle on the process and helped one person invest their IRA funds in one of our projects. We were amazed and so were they, when they got a fantastic return in less than 12 months! Word got out, and the phone started to ring…. This business was started by an accident of fate, but we ran with it. We hired the right team and built a customer-centric organization around investing with selfdirected IRAs. Six years later, we made the Inc. 500 list! Adam: What is your definition of success, and has your company achieved it? David: Have we achieved success? Sure a level of it. Our clients have been very successful because we've given them access to alternative investments and to a level of personal financial control many never knew was possible. To me, their success is also ours. I have an insatiable appetite for both personal and professional development, and I've been privileged to watch Guidant play a role in this development in clients and employees. Despite inevitable ups and downs, my belief in our mission and the viability of our products remains as high as ever. While we have definitely achieved a high level of success, I believe we will enjoy even more success in the future.
Adam: To what do you attribute your company's recent achievements? David: I believe our achievements are due to the fact that we hired a great team, focused on our customers as unique individuals with unique needs, and we continue to invest in scalable technology. Each year we realize productivity gains because we continue to improve our customer experience without having to scale overhead. Adam: In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur. David: Unpredictable. Adam: Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most? David: Earlier I mentioned Ben Elowitz and his company WetPaint.com. I am enamored with Wetpaint because of its ability to allow anyone especially those without technical skill, to create and contribute to web sites written for and by, those who share a passion or interest. To do this, Wetpaint combines the best aspects of blogs, wikis, forums and social networks so anyone can click and type on the Web. They have created well over a billion websites in just two years off their platform. Adam: How do you achieve balance in your life? David: Ha! That's funny.
The Best Business Opportunities of 2010 By Susan Ward 1) Green Construction Consumers, increasingly concerned about environmental impacts, are demanding greener construction practices. Whether they're purchasing a new home or upgrading an old one, they want a building that not only looks good but meets current environmental standards. Homes that meet ratings standards such as LEED, BuiltGreen, and R-2000 are going to be in ever increasing demand. Green materials, green techniques, and green certifications are going to be the keys to success in construction this year. 2) Green Technologies Business opportunities abound for green ideas. Whether you believe in the seriousness of climate change or not, one thing is certain; the furore has released the government purse strings for green technology projects. Both loans and grants are available to fund projects that attempt to solve environmental challenges. In Canada, the Government of Canada's Funding Technologies for the Environment website is a searchable "inventory of funding and incentive programs to help develop, demonstrate and deploy environmental technologies". 3) Dollar/Discount Stores In 2010, everyone will continue to say that the economy is getting better. Consumers generally, however, will continue to be more frugal than they used to be and look for bargains, making dollar store and discount store franchises solid business opportunities. Buck or Two and the Great Canadian Dollar Store are just two discount store franchises you may want to investigate. Wondering whether or not buying a franchise is the right business opportunity for you? Should You Buy a Franchise? lays out the advantages and disadvantages to help you decide. 4) Senior Care Senior care makes my best business opportunities list once again because of ever-growing demand. Business opportunities in senior care range from opening your own senior care home through providing in-home care or home services such as preparing meals, housekeeping or running errands. Senior care franchises are another option for getting in on this business opportunity.
5) Senior Renovations Home renovations have long been a booming business opportunity to the extent that anyone who can pick up a
hammer has tried to muscle their way into the market. How do you distinguish yourself from all the renovation wannabes? Focus on a niche market. Seniors needing renovations to make their lives easier and stay in their own homes longer is a niche waiting to be colonized. Ramps and specialized bath fittings are just the beginning. 6) Heating and Cooling Products and Services Heating and cooling products and services are great business opportunities this year because the industry gets a boost from government environmental incentives. When installing a heat pump in the home not only saves money in the long run but gets you a rebate or a tax break, consumers are much more likely to do it. Small businesses that install and service furnaces, heaters, gas fireplaces, air conditioners, heat pumps and the like will thrive. 7) Local Food Suppliers Business opportunities supplying local food are another example of how consumer demand shapes the marketplace. Hardly anyone even bothered to read a food label five years ago; now knowing exactly where your food came from and how it was grown or raised is all the rage. It's a good thing, I think especially for people involved in producing local food. Farmers' market and farm gate sales are increasing, but don't forget that retail markets and restaurants specializing in local food are also good business opportunities.
8) Nutrition Consulting People's concern about food and how it's produced has also translated into a bonanza for the food as health movement. Besides jumping on the bandwagon and buying whatever food is being currently promoted as having spectacular health benefits, consumers are looking for food information tailored to their lifestyle and health concerns. It will be a banner year for nutritionists, but also for naturopaths. 9) Social Media Marketing/ Management Unless you've been hiding in a cave somewhere for the past year you know how social media has grown and how it's come to be viewed as the next holy grail in marketing for businesses. What you may not have noticed is how difficult it is for many businesses, especially small businesses, to use it, making Social Media Marketing an excellent business opportunity. If you can promise and deliver actual effective social media marketing campaigns, they will come. 10) Business Security The trend for businesses to beef up their security will continue, creating all kinds of business opportunities for products and services, from biometric security systems through security guards. Note that the type of security in demand tends to vary greatly with the size and type of business; small businesses are much more likely to invest in an alarm system than in a fingerprint identification system.
Steps to Starting a Business By Susan Ward 1) Come up with a good business idea.
6) Find small business financing.
One thing that's the same about starting a business in Canada as starting a business anywhere else is that you need a good business idea first. Follow the link above to find collections of small and homebased business ideas you can browse through, how to come up with winning business ideas of your own, and how to test the viability of your business idea once you've chosen one.
While many new small businesses are financed out of their owners' pockets, many others need an infusion of funds from other sources to get off the ground. This page presents the main small business financing options for financing a new business in Canada.
2) Write a business plan. My Writing a Business Plan series that starts with this Business Plan Outline will lead you through the process of writing each section of the business plan. You'll find more information, including links to sample business plans, in the Business Plans section of this website. 3) Choose a winning name for your business. When choosing a business name, there are two things to consider; the business name's marketing potential and its legal elements. The link above will take you to the information you need to choose the best possible business name for your new business when you're starting a business in Canada. 4) Choose a form of business ownership. What forms of business ownership can you choose to legally structure your business when you're starting a business in Canada? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each of the forms of business ownership? These resources will help you choose the best form of business ownership for your new business.
7) Get a business license. While not necessary for all businesses, many new businesses will need to get business licenses before they can operate legally within their municipalities. If your city or town doesn't have a website, you can find the information in the blue pages of your phone book. You may also need other licenses and permits depending on what kind of business you're starting. Industry Canada's BizPaL is a really useful tool for finding out what permits and licenses you'll need to do business. Available in most provinces and territories, BizPaL will provide a personalized list of the business documents you need for all levels of government.
how to register; Workers' Compensation Insurance has links to the Worker's Compensation Boards in every province, where you can register online in some cases. Find out more about hiring employees, employment standards, E.I. and other employee issues in my Human Resources Management Library. The Payroll Taxes section includes Employer's Guides, T4 slips, the ROE - all the forms and details you need to manage your employees' payroll deductions.
9) Register for the PST. Before starting a business in Canada, you may also need to register as a collector of retail sales tax (RST), also known as provincial sales tax (PST). Do You Have to Register for PST or RST? In provinces such as Ontario and B.C., provincial sales tax registration is called registration as a vendor. The PST/RST library includes links to provincial sales tax information in various provinces, to make it easier for you to register for, and learn how to collect and remit provincial sales tax in your province.
11) Buy other kinds of business insurance. Protect your new business by making sure that you have the kinds of business insurance you need. Do You Have The Business Insurance You Need? Explains what property, liability, business interruption, key people, and disability insurance are. Find out more about these types of business insurance in the Insurance library. 12) Get your business records off to a good start.
10) Prepare to have employees. 5) Register your business name. Business name registration is a legal requirement for almost all businesses in Canada. Find out whether or not you have to register your new business' name and learn all the details about business name registration for starting a business in Canada here.
When you're starting a business, hiring employees may be the furthest thing from your mind, but it's amazing how quickly a business can grow. And once you have employees, your business will probably need to register with the Worker's Compensation Board in your province. My Guide To Workers' Compensation Insurance explains who has to register for Workers' Compensation insurance and
If you keep good records from the first moment you're starting a business in Canada, things such as accounting and paying taxes become so much easier. Get your business records off to a good start w i t h 7 Wa y s t o M a k e R e c o r d Management Easy and 7 Ways to Control Chaos in Your Small Business.
Networking In A Bowl Increase The Power of Your Marketing With Buddy Networking By Maria Marsala clients. 4) What's in it for them?
Buddy networking is when you find a complementary business to market with and the process ends up being mutually beneficial. This top ten is about one way to buddy network - sponsoring a contest, giving away a gift certificate to another business that attracts your ideal client. If you speak or teach classes, you can also use the bowl concept to run contests. Chamber member? Run a contest there. You don't have to give away "big" prizes cups, quote in a frame, and appropriate items are sure to make your students' hearts smile! Instructions For Networking In A Bowl: 1) Identify 3 businesses Where does your ideal client shop? What restaurants do they visit? Create a list and then prioritize. If you travel for your business, or do business with brick and mortar businesses that also have Web sites, feel free to identify these businesses too. 2) Contact the owner
ď ś Ask for an in-person (preferred) or telephone meeting (okay if you are doing business virtually or from another city). Make an appointment to meet with them and bring credible information about your business to the meeting like newspaper articles, brochures, etc. Remember to market with integrity! Let the business owner know up front what you plan to send to the contest entrants. 3) Swap literature Ask the business owner for additional literature about their business. Ask if there is any way that you can assist them, etc.
The business owner can reap promotional benefits. Contest information can be added to their newspaper ads, Web sites, flyers, posters, menus, press releases etc. The second chance for promotion is after the winner is announced! Let's not forget that the winner will be spending "whatever prize you paid for" at their establishment, too. 5) Purchase a bowl Help a local charity by purchasing a jar, bowl dish or fish bowl with a large enough opening for business cards. Some places to check out are Goodwill, the Salvation Army, and Discovery Centers. Make a sign for the front of the bowl. 6) Don't limit yourself Not everyone has a business card. Design your own entry form. Sam's Club has boxes of blank business cards that are ideal to use. Or cut some index cards. The form should include a line requesting the entrant's name, address, phone number and e-mail address. 7) Price to you? For the price of a gift certificate to their establishment, you'll receive a bowl f u l l o f business/personal cards from people you've established are your ideal clients. 8) What's in it for you? The benefits of buddy networking may include the opportunity to: * B u i l d a relationship with a business owner who attracts your ideal
* Tell your ideal clients about your services. * Advertise your business by sponsoring the contest. * Advertise the same contest in your store for added benefits! * The list goes on!!! 9) Write to the contestants. Send a letter of introduction to each person and do some permission marketing. Things you might mention in your correspondence are: * The name of the winner, and the city they reside in how your service can benefit them with a short description of your service *As much contact information as possible - phone number, address, email, web site *Any free services you offer *Ask them to subscribe to your newsletter on or off line *Include a consolation prize like a pen with your name on it, discount certificate to your services on a postcard, etc.
Lies Entrepreneurs Tell Venture Capitalists by Howard Anderson Lies, Damn Lies and Marketing Lies: Welcome To My World Ever wonder what we high-tech venture capital firms do? I bet you think we spend our days searching for the next great Giga-Mega Networking Breakthrough, analyzing state-of-the-art technology and meeting with "insanely great" companies that are each "the next Cisco.” Wrong! Actually, we spend our lives in endless meetings with people who are lying to us. They line up at our door with their PowerPoint presentations, baying for attention or money. Some days it's so bad we have to disguise ourselves as Federal Express employees just to get into our office. If that's not irritating enough, they all come with their own nifty brand of chatter, known as the 10 Great Lies. Lie 1: "The market is $2.5 billion today... going to $7.2 billion in 2003!" What's your source -- Forrester Research? Be serious. Then, when asked about the 10 leading firms, you admit their total sales don't exceed $200 million. Anyone know a market where the 10 leading firms have just 10% of the market? Lie 2: "Fidelity, Ford and GE have selected our product!" No, they haven't. They may have agreed some day -- not too soon -- to let you run a free trial, but even then I doubt it. The only user is probably your investment banker, who hopes to do the IPO and buys one of everything. Some investment bankers, such as Goldman Sachs, have done more product endorsements than Michael Jordan. Call me back when someone puts your product into a production environment and runs the company on it. Lie 3: "The other venture capitalists are behind us!" Sure they are. They're so far behind you they're invisible. Your original venture team has bailed and you are haemorrhaging from every known orifice. What your venture guys want is someone -- hell anyone -- to put up some fresh money so they don't have to write down their investment.
Lie 4: "Cisco wants to be our strategic partner!" You betcha. Cisco has more than 10,000 employees, almost as many as it has strategic partners. If every strategic partner of Cisco's brought in one can of food, we could cure world hunger. Furthermore, Cisco may be your strategic partner, but are you theirs? One of their top 10? Top 100? Lie 5: "We have a world-class management team!" Frankly, I haven't seen so many bozos since the circus left town. Your team hasn't been on anything other than an unending string of failures. You have more wannabes than Hollywood. Lie 6: "We have no competition. And what little competition we have, we are kicking their butt!" Your competitors have more than vaporware: They have products that actually work, a support desk where they take calls and customers who are continuing to buy. You, on the other hand, do have as nifty a set of four-color slides as I have seen all week. Lie 7: "The Industry Standard is planning a major story about us!" Righto. You are paying your public relations flack $15,000 a month to send out press releases that are never, ever read. Some publications heat their buildings by burning them. Lie 8: "We are considering a public offering in the fourth quarter!" You might be, but investment bankers have some standards -- er, scratch that -and even so, the I-bankers won't return your phone calls within your lifetime. Lie 9: "We aren't a business-toconsumer company; we are businessto-business!" Actually, last month you were businessto-consumer, but nobody bought, so you did a quick fix and now you can claim to be business-to-business -- and still no one will buy. Really, you are a B2L company (born to lose). Lie 10, "We are the new paradigm!" Whatever the hell that means. If I had a dime for every company that has told me it was the new paradigm, I would be rich enough to pay Bill Gates' legal bill.
L i e s Ve n t u re C a p i t a l i s t s Te l l Entrepreneurs Lie 1: "Our money's different!" What we really mean is that you should reject other venture capitalists' better terms because we are going to spend a lot of time "helping" you. Miss your ship dates and we will give you all the help you need... to find a new job. Lie 2: "We are sending in the term sheet -- sign it, and we're on our way" To where? The term sheet makes you stand still so we can do the due diligence we were too lazy to do in the first place. We will talk to every customer, every supplier, every competitor --- and in the meantime, you can go suck eggs for 30 days while we figure out how to wiggle out of some of the terms. Lie 3: "There is no need for us to sign a nondisclosure agreement. No one in the industry does!" In other words, tell us your innermost secrets and we promise to... never forget your generosity. Lie 4: 'We can help you negotiate with the investment bankers!" You betcha. We owe Goldman big time for the turkey we sold it last month... and you are the "make good". Besides, Piper Jaffrey gets me all that "Friends and Family" IPO stock... so our short list is going to be very short. Lie 5: "We can help you recruit a world-class board of directors!" Actually, we will get other CEOs who we are backing to sit on your board. We especially like CEOs who still need our money. But you can bet they will be independent of our wishes. Lie 6: "We should do a 'D' round now right before the IPO just in case!" In case you didn't realize that we are stuffing more money into your company because we know we can make four times our money in 90 days, which is a "fair" return.
“The best way to predict the future is to invent it” - Alan Kay
XIX Common Wealth Games The 2010 Commonwealth Games are going to be held in Delhi, India with a population of over 15 million, compared to (2006 games hosts) Melbourne's 3.7 million and Greater Manchester's 2.5 million population at the 2002 games. The Commonwealth Games is a multisport event held every four years involving the elite athletes of the Commonwealth of Nations. The first such event, then known as the British Empire Games, was held in 1930. The name changed to British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1954, to British Commonwealth Games in 1978 and assumed the current name of the Commonwealth Games in 1978. As well as many Olympic sports, the Games also include some sports that are played mainly in Commonwealth countries, such as lawn bowls, rugby sevens and netball. There are currently 53
Commonwealth nations and 71 participating teams. Attendance at the Commonwealth Games is typically around 5,000 athletes, which makes it one of the largest international sporting events in terms of participants. The four constituent countries of the United KingdomEngland, Scotland, Wales and Northern Irelandsend separate teams to the Commonwealth Games, and individual teams are also sent from the British Crown DependenciesGuernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Manand many of the British overseas territories. Only six teams have attended every Commonwealth Games: Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland
and Wales. The city of New Delhi, home to 13.8 million people, will host the Commonwealth Games in 2010. This will be the first time India has hosted the Games and only the second time the event has been held in Asia. Delhi is the capital city of India and is rich in culture and history. It stands on the western end of the Gangetic Plain and is bordered by the states of Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. There are two main districts of the city, Old Delhi the capital of Muslim India between the mid 17th and late 19th centuries with its historic sites, mosques and monuments and New Delhi, the imperial city created by the British Raj with its imposing government buildings and tree lined avenues.
DID YOU KNOW?
DID YOU KNOW? August is baby month We bid a hearty welcome to the millions of new earthlings who arrive in August, the month with the highest birth rate. You are the proud results of a joyous Christmas season… even if your parents did not put up Christmas trees. 19.5% of new August babies are born in India and 11.6% in China, respectively 6 and 4 times more than in the United States: approximately 2.2 million and 1.3
million vs 0.4 million. Which means two babies are born every second in India and China vs a new baby every 8 seconds in the US. World-wide, 5 beautiful new babies are born every second. Human bones for furniture The characters in the movies Psycho and Silence of the Lambs are based on a real person, Ed Gein. He died on July 26, 1984 of respiratory failure in the Mendota Mental Health Institute, Wisconsin. His victims were not so lucky. Ed was a grave robber who had developed a taste for slicing up people. He murdered his victims, cut them up, and then used their bones to make furniture. When caught in 1957, his room featured lampshades and chair seats made of human skin. The size of the sun in comparison It is the fire of life. It can be kind but it can get angry. But it never throws its weight around. It is the sun. And although it is 330,000 more massive than earth and contains 99.8% of the mass in our solar system, it is small in comparison with some other stars.
The sun never cease to amaze us with its theatrics, its lava flares dancing across its surface in a ballet of nuclear fusion, sometimes leaping millions of miles into the air. And although the sun is big, its intense heat and light makes it difficult to capture good images with normal instruments. So NASA scientists use a Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager and an Atmospheric Imaging Assembly detector to view the ultra-violet (UV) and extreme ultra-violet lithography (EUV) wavelengths released by the sun. The resulting images are spectacular. Choosing a mate for life In 1976 Mrs Janine Swift of Los Angeles married a 50lb (22kg) rock in a ceremony that was witnessed by 20 people. With a divorce rate of about 50% in the West, it is doubtful that she's still married to the rock. In fact, the chance of a first marriage ending in divorce is between 50% and 67%. The chance that a second marriage will end in divorce is about 10% higher than for the first marriage. The middle finger and the fricative F Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers to prevent them from drawing the renowned English longbow in the future. The famous weapon was made of the English Yew tree, and the act drawing the longbow was known as “plucking the yew,” or “pluck yew.” To the embarrassment of the French, the English won the battle and began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers, saying, “Pluck yew!” The letter “F” later crept into the symbolic gesture known as showing the finger or the highway salute the universal sign of disrespect because of the difficulty in pronouncing consonant clusters. To get the feathers for the longbow arrows, one would have gone to the village plucker with the introduction “pleasant person pheasant plucker.” The result was the change of the letter P to a labiodental fricative F. Or so it is told. There actually are records of
the finger sign being used in ancient Roman writings and a reference in an ancient Greek comedy as a gesture of annoyance or insult. Valentine's Day festival of love Valentine's Day originates from the ancient Roman fertility festival of Lupercalia, which was celebrated on 15 February in honor of the gods Lupercus a n d Faunus, as well as t h e legendary founders of Rome, Romulus a n d Remus. During t h e festival, young men would draw the names of women from a box, and each couple would be paired until next year's celebration. Often they would fall in love and marry. At around 270AD Rome was facing battles and civil uprising. The men were not keen to join the army. Emperor Claudius II believed that the men did not want to leave their loved ones and summarily canceled all marriages and engagements. Two priests, Valentine and Marius, disobeyed the decree and secretly performed marriage ceremonies. Valentine was caught on 14 February and dragged to jail. Later in the day he was clubbed to death and beheaded. It is said that, before his execution, Valentine himself had fallen in love with the jailer's daughter. He signed his final note to her, “From your Valentine.”
DID YOU KNOW?
DID YOU KNOW? Artificial Intelligence In 1637 Rene Descartes, the French mathematician and philosopher, predicted that it would never be possible to make a machine that thinks as humans
do. That was a rather astonishing observation considering that the concept of the analytical machine was devised by Charles Babbage only two hundred years later. Babbage never completed his analytical engine but his theories laid the early foundation for artificial intelligence. The father of Artificial Intelligence is British mathematician Alan Matheson Turing. In 1950 he declared that in the future there would be a machine that would duplicate human intelligence. He devised a specialised test, known as the â€œTuring testâ€?, to be used to prove artificial intelligence. In the test, a human and a computer hidden from view would be asked random identical questions. If the computer was successful, the questioner would be unable to distinguish the machine from the human.
p r e s e r v e d e a d b o d i e s ; ~ Toluene, which is commonly used as an ingredient in paint thinner; ~ Acetone, an active ingredient in nail p o l i s h r e m o v e r ; ~ Ammonia, which scientists have discovered lets you absorb more nicotine, keeping you hooked on smoking. If you smoke, you and those around you also inhaling arsenic, benzene, cadmium, hydrogen cyanide, lead, mercury and phonol. In all, 4000 harmful chemicals, including 44 types of poison, of which 43 are proven c a n c e rcausing substances. That should be reason enough why a p e r s o n should stop smoking immediately. Diamond facts A diamond is the hardest natural substance on earth, but if it is placed in an oven and the temperature is raised to about 763 degrees Celsius (1405 degrees Fahrenheit), it will simply vanish, without even ash remaining. Only a little carbon dioxide will have been released. Diamonds are formed over a period of a billion or more years deep within earth's crust about 150km (90 miles) deep and is pushed to the surface by volcanoes. Most diamonds are found in volcanic rock, called Kimberlite, or in the sea after having been carried away by rivers when they were pushed to the surface.
In 1947 Turing argued that the brain could itself be regarded as a computer. Working on his Automatic Computer Engine, he declared that he was more interested in producing models of the action of the brain than in the practical applications of computers. What cigarettes contain Tobacco is a $200 billion industry, producing six trillion cigarettes a year about 1,000 cigarettes for each person on earth. And this is what you'll find in cigarettes: ~ Formaldehyde, which embalmer use to
A diamond is 58 times harder than the next hardest mineral on earth, corundum, from which rubies and sapphires are formed. It
was only during the 15th century that it was discovered that the only way to cut diamonds was with other diamonds. Yet, diamonds are brittle. If hit hard with a hammer, a diamond will shatter or splinter. Human head and brain size The human head contains 22 bones, consisting the cranium and the facial bones. The cranium is formed by 8 bones: the frontal bone, two parietal bones, two temporal bones, the occipital bone in the back, the ethmoid bone behind the nose, and the sphenoid bone. The face consists of 14 bones including the maxilla (upper jaw) and mandible (lower jaw). (The skull has many little holes in its base which allow the cranial nerves to travel to their destinations.)
The cranium protects the brain, which, for an average adult male weighs about 1400 gram (49 oz). The brain of Russian novelist Turgenev, weighed 2021g (71 oz), Bismarck's brain weighed 1807g (64 oz), while that of famous French statesman Gambetta was 1294g (46 oz). Female average brain mass is slightly less than that of males. The largest woman's brain recorded weighed 1742g (61 oz). Einstein's brain weighed 1230 gram (43.39 ounces), meaning Einstein's brain was smaller than average. An elephant's brain weighs 5000g (176oz or 11 lb), a whale's 10000g (352oz or 22lb). In proportion to the body, the whale has a much smaller brain than man. This seem to give man the edge, until it was discovered that the dwarf monkey has 1g of brain per 27g (0.95oz) of body, and the capuchin monkey has 1g of brain per 17,5g body, whereas man has 1 gram of brain to 44g of body.
SU-DOKU How To Play Fill in the grid so that every horizontal row, every vertical column and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1-9, without repeating the numbers in the same row, column or box. You can`t change the digits already given in the grid. Every puzzles has one solution.
Across 1. Logical Latin word 5. Die feature 9. "Ninotchka" star 14. Capriole or jetĂŠ 15. Inspect the figures? 16. Most of Earth 17. Hansom fee 18. True-to-life 19. Macbeth title 20. Certain scam 23. Word for poor Yorick 24. Disembarrass 25. Stabilizer muscles 28. Poor Richard's book 31. Short shots from the foul line 34. "PG" assigner 36. --- Alamos 37. Musical symbol 38. 1989 skateboarding film 42. Exploitative type 43. Cultural funding org. 44. Man of parts 45. "The Gold Bug" monogram 46. Heinz Field player 49. Vast time period 50. Part of the second qtr. 51. "--- Well That Ends Well" 53. Gadget for Agent 86 59. "Beetle Bailey" character 60. Hectored 61. Parted company with a horse 63. Like some jackets 64. Nose wrinkler 65. Have concern 66. Place for pins 67. Pluribus, as in e pluribus unum 68. Mini revelation?
Down 1. Small toy maker 2. Get as a result 3. Actor Coleman 4. Kathleen Battle's bag 5. Kind of gown 6. Type of hiring discrimination 7. Unlike Lady Godiva 8. Sushi bar servings 9. Fiction genre 10. Suffered from the workout 11. Five hundred sheets of paper 12. Scourge 13. Hydrogen's atomic no. 21. Word with smoke or fire 22. Computer problem 25. Do a lawyer's job 26. Model wood 27. Declivitous 29. Tiny pond plants 30. Commandment adverb 31. Orchestra member 32. Major no-no 33. Boat section 35. Musician's need 37. Org. that regulates radio 39. Conclusion's opposite 40. Formerly called 41. Baseball Hall of Famer Combs 46. Fleet-footed 47. Applied, as flattery 48. First name in mysteries 50. Dickinson of "Police Woman" 52. Nosher's delight 53. Lead a square dance 54. Like some testimony 55. Beginning at 56. It may be prepared by a jerk 57. Highlands family 58. James Joyce's homeland 59. Marienbad, for one 62. Links item
Mind Gym Quiz Question: Name this Indian Tennis player who has turned Hollywood filmmaker? 1) Leander Paes 2) Mahesh Bhupathi 3) Vijay Amritraj 4) Ashok Amritraj Question: With what honour has Dr. Kalam been decorated, the highest honour that an Indian citizen can receive? 1) Arjuna Award 2) Padma Bhushan 3) The Bharat Ratna 4) Padma Vibhushan Question: Into what position was Dr. Kalam sworn in on 25 July, 2002? 1) Prime Minister of India 2) Election-Commissioner of India 3) Secretary-General of the Commonwealth 4) President of India Question: Shakespeare lived to a ripe old age - for his time. How old was he when he died? 1) Under 40 2) In his 60's 3) In his 40's 4) In his 50's Question: The Globe is famous for being the theatre where Shakespeare performed. Which theatre was its main rival? 1) Whitefriars 2) Salisbury Court Theatre 3) The Rose 4) Blackfriars Question: Which of the following had a son named "Hamnet"? 1) William Shakespeare 2) Earl of Essex 3) Lord Derby
4) Walter Raleigh
Question: What is the name of Edison's motion picture invention? 1) Film 2) Kinetoscope 3) Phonoscope
Question: At what age did Edison become a telegraph operator? 1) 13 2) 14 3) 15
Question: Which number was a perfect number, according to Pythagoras? 1) 7 2) 8 3) 9
Question: Yuri Gagarin became the first man in space on what date? 1) April 12, 1961 2) March 26, 1957 3) October 4, 1957
4) April 7, 1961
Question: What were Albert's two favorite school subjects? 1) Algebra and Geography 3) Psychiatry and Physical Fitness
2) Geometry and Philosophy 4) English and Science
Question: What two aspects of his life did Albert most appreciate? 1) Nature and Music 2) War and Politics 3) Philosophy and Math
4) Friends and Dancing
Question: What was Florence's best known work (published in 1860)? 1) Notes on Nursing 2) Musings on Medicine 3) Excellent Enemas
4) Impeccable Injections
Question: Florence became famous as "The Lady with the Lamp", looking after wounded British soldiers in which war? 1) Franco-Prussian War 2) Afghan War 3) Crimean War 4) Boxer Rebellion Question: Disgraced cricketer Ajay Jadeja is the son-in-law of which politician? 1) Jaya Jaitley 2) V.P.Singh 3) Jaya Lalitha
4) Jaya Prada
Question: Which is the headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity founded by Mother Theresa? 1) Nirmal Hriday 2) Shishu Bhavan 3) Asha Sadan 4) Shanti Nagar Question: What was Abraham Lincoln first paying job? 1) Carpenter 2) Chopping fire wood
3) Cab driver
4) Rowing a flat boat across the Ohio River
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