Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For April 20, 2008

Percentage of surveyed school superintendents who believe that arts training is crucial to developing creativity, according to key findings from a report by the Conference Board and Americans for the Arts, in partnership with the American Association of School Administrators: 99

Percentage of surveyed employers who agree: 97

Rank of problem identification and articulation that employers identify as the most important talents indicating creativity: 1

Source: Conference Board.

Given free choice, percentage of Americans -- both men and women -- who say they would prefer to have a job outside the home, according to Gallup's annual Work and Education survey: 58

Percentage of women who say they would rather hold a job outside the home: 50

Percentage of men who say the same: 68

Source: Gallup.

Percentage of U.S. financial advisers who say their clients are still planning a timely retirement, despite current financial woes, according to a survey conducted by Brinker Capital: 46

Of those U.S. financial advisers who say their clients are off track, percentage who attribute this to their clients' starting saving too late: 63

Percentage of U.S. financial advisers who say their clients plan to work past age 65: 54

Source: Brinker Capital.

Percentage of the U.S. managerial work force that is comprised of women, according to a survey by the Simmons School of Management: 51

Estimated percentage of board membership of large, publicly traded U.S. corporations that are women: 15

Ranks of social network building (88 percent), self-promotion (61 percent) and career progression (56 percent) as the actions identified by women that they could take to increase their chances for board membership: 1, 2, 3

Source: Simmons School of Management.

Number of lifetime victories achieved by Cy Young, still baseball's winningest pitcher, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: 511

Percentage of games he won in his 22 seasons: 62

When Cy Young retired, number of people who went to major league baseball games: 6.5 million

Estimated number who go today: 78 million

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of affluent U.S. households (households with $500,000 or more in investable assets) that are likely to change their budget and spending habits due to the current economic climate, according to data from Spectrem Group: 42

Percentage who fear they'll lose their jobs: 6

Source: Spectrem Group.

Ranks of the Bible, "Gone With the Wind," the "Lord of the Rings" series, the "Harry Potter" series and "The Stand" as Americans' favorite books, according to the results of a nationwide Harris Poll: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Source: Harris Interactive.

Percentage of small business owners/managers who say they still look for help with their taxes, according to a survey conducted by American Express Small Business Monitor: 79

Percentage who say they do their taxes themselves: 17

Percentage who do them by hand with a pen and paper: 6

Source: OPEN: The Small Business Network -- American Express.

Percentage of the world's heroin and other opiates that originate in Afghanistan, according to the magazine Newsweek: 93

Estimated number of Afghan families who support themselves by raising poppies, according to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime: 500,000

Estimated total amount those growers received for their crops in 2007: $1 billion (about $2,000 per household)

Source: Newsweek.

Percentage of U.S. consumers who say they are more likely to do business with a company that offers the flexibility to interact using self-service -- whether via the Internet, on a mobile device or at a kiosk or ATM, according to a survey by NCR and BuzzBack Market Research: 86

Percentage of respondents who say their likelihood to use self-service has increased over the past year: 56

Source: NCR Corp.

Idle Thought

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has." -- Margaret Mead

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)bwr.eastlink.ca.)

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