Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For February 22, 2009

Percentage of Americans who had problems with one or more spellings in a test of 10 everyday words, according to a survey conducted by Ipsos MORI on behalf of the Spelling Society: 50-plus

Percentage of respondents who had initially believed that they had a problem spelling: 25

Percentage who admitted being reliant on spell-checkers for tasks such as completing job application forms or writing important letters: 33

Ranks of women and men when it comes to spelling: 1, 2 (The only word that men spelled better than women in the U.S. was "liaison.")

Source: Ipsos Mori.

Percentage of car buyers who said that their worst mistake when purchasing a car was overpaying for a new car that quickly depreciated in value, according to a survey of U.S. adults conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs on behalf of CarMax: 26

Percentage who said that their worst mistake was not doing enough research: 22

Source: Ipsos Public Affairs.

Percentage of workers who revealed that they have dated a co-worker at some time during their careers, with 18 percent admitting to doing it twice or more, according to's annual office romance survey: 40

Percentage of male workers who currently work with someone they would like to date: 14

Percentage of women who said the same: 5


Ranks of environmental services/clean technology, health care, life sciences/pharmaceuticals and energy on the list of industries recruiters expect will generate the greatest growth in executive-level job opportunities in 2009, according to a survey of executive search firms conducted by ExecuNet): 1, 2, 3, 4

Ranks of business development, sales, operations management and finance on the list of functions expected to be in greatest demand during the year ahead: 1, 2, 3, 4

Source: ExecuNet.

Percentage of affluent Americans (incomes of over $100,000) who say the economy is their greatest concern, according to an Ipsos Mendelsohn survey: 60

Percentage who cited unemployment and jobs: 30

Source: Ipsos Mendelsohn.

Percentage of alternative energy investors and analysts who expect alternative energy stocks to outperform the broader markets in 2009, according to a survey by global public relations agency Waggener Edstrom Worldwide: 50

Percentage who see the Obama administration as a "positive" or "very positive" performance catalyst: 82

Source: Waggener Edstrom Worldwide.

Cost per compromised customer to U.S. companies of data breach incidents, according to the results of a U.S. Cost of a Data Breach Study by PGP Corp. and the Ponemon Institute, which examined 43 organizations across 17 different industry sectors: $202

Since the study's inception in 2005, estimated growth per victim of this cost component (nearly a 40 percent increase): $64

Source: Ponemon Institute.

Percentage of Americans who say the biggest communication faux pas is when their loved ones expect them to always answer when they call, according to a survey commissioned by SpinVox conducted by Kelton Research: 28

Percentage who say it's when their honeys return their calls before listening to the voice mail they left: 27

Source: Kelton Research.

Percentage of baby boomers caring for an aging parent who say that it has put a strain on their marriage, according to a research study conducted by 80

Percentage of divorced baby boomers who said caregiving played a major role in their divorce: 25


Idle Thought

"This country will not be a permanently good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a reasonably good place for all of us to live in." -- Theodore Roosevelt, 26th U.S. President

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)