Posted by: reachdev | July 1, 2010

It All Comes Down to the Individual

All forms of media assail us with governmental solutions to our country’s economic woes; TARP Funding, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, etc. are all attempts by our leaders to create jobs and light a fire in our economy. Unfortunately, history indicates that universal solutions, be they the recovery act of 2009 or the WPA of the 1930’s, are only a short-term bandage on nationwide economic woes. The jobs that are “created” do not last and the cost (increased taxation & federal debt) must eventually be paid for by other workers.
What then is the solution? I contend that it is founded in individual creativity, effort and leadership. Let’s look at a few examples from our home base of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Lawson Software – Started in the early ‘70’s by brothers, Richard and Bill Lawson in a spare bedroom in Richard’s home. Lawson now employs 3700 people worldwide with $700 million in sales.
Medtronic, Inc. – It was formed as a partnership in April 1949 by Earl Bakken and his brother-in-law, Palmer Hermundslie and set up shop in a Minneapolis Garage. 50 years later, Medtronic employs over 41,000 people and has worldwide revenues of $15 billion.
Carlson Companies – Starting in 1938 with an idea and a $55 loan, entrepreneur Curt Carlson founded the Gold Bond Stamp Company in his home town of Minneapolis. Now it is a worldwide powerhouse of the hospitality industry employing nearly 150,000 individuals.
Add to these astounding numbers millions of small 1 and 2 person businesses begun by individuals that saw a need and decided to fill it with their own creative solutions. From these examples we can see that productivity increases when the individual woman or man decides to be more productive. Our responsibility in spurring the economic recovery is to work diligently and creatively to increase our organizations profitability and effectiveness. From this new jobs will be created and our economy will begin to grow again.


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