BIZTIPS - June 25, 2006

Biz Tips: Turn These Business Tips Into Opportunities
Sunday, June 25, 2006
By Art Hill

If you're in business, it's hard to turn the pages of a newspaper without discovering a piece of information that's either a threat or an opportunity (or both). Here are a few items from a recent "Data Mine" column by John MacIntyre in the Oregonian.

69 Percent of participants in a recent survey indicated that they were less likely to do business with a company after a bad call center experience.

During the 2002-2003 recession, 1.6 Million new jobs were created by companies with fewer than 20 employees. During the same period, only 400,000 new jobs were created in companies with 21-499 employees. And now for the zinger -- 1 million jobs were LOST during 2002-2003 by companies with 500 or more employees. Better job security at big companies? I don't think so.

Now for what one of my colleagues calls "a brilliant flash of the obvious." 45 Percent of adults say it's difficult to stick to a budget! That leads me to wonder whether the other 55 percent were fibbing, or did they skip the question?

According to the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, 3.5 million gallons of gasoline are wasted each year due to under-inflated tires. Let's see, at 3 bucks a gallon that's ...

And finally, in the past two years, consumer debt (not counting mortgages) has increased 12.5 percent, but late payments have increased 19.2 percent. Time to cut up a couple of credit cards?

Then there are the "industry insider" shockers that are little known, but impact a wide variety of businesses and consumers. According to the June issue of Truck Parts and Service magazine, a new generation of motor oils will be released this Fall to keep up with Federal requirements for increased fuel efficiency. These oils will comply with the new CJ-5 standard. The good news is that the new oils are more "slippery," reducing mileage-robbing friction. The bad news is, nobody seems to know how engines will wear using them. Pop quiz -- how many of us depend on cars, trucks, or goods shipped or delivered by trucks in our business? Did I see every hand go up?

Keep your eyes open for tidbits like these, especially ones that could threaten or grow your business. By the way, thanks to Rob Johnson, service supervisor at Cummins Northwest for the tip on the new oil standard.

Content © 2006 East Oregonian