US Exports

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Exports from the U.S. have grown from $448bn to $1.55tn over the past 25 years, but which export categories make the most money?

The USA has 248 export categories valued over $1bn, three times greater than a quarter of a century ago.

But besides the stereotypical exports from The States such as corn and cotton, medicines, meat and gold, which are the top export market categories that actually rake in dollars?


Aircraft is far and away the largest export category in terms of monetary value from the U.S. – one-third more valuable than the second export with this list .

1 thing that’s certain is that the likes of Boeing would not enjoy a trade war between the world’s two export powerhouses.


The value of the gas market has increased massively in recent years, despite the clamour from governments to turn to renewable energy sources and international businesses to be seen as green.

Last year, gasoline (including other refined petroleum products) raked in only under $77.5bn whilst Mexico holds 27% market share and Canada 11%.

Motor Vehicles

It is estimated that this year foreign motor brands will produce more vehicles in the United States compared to U.S. firms will. Last year, a vast majority of those exports entered the Canadian, Chinese and Mexican markets with two U.S. ports exporting more than $1b each throughout the year.

Perhaps not surprisingly, among the nations that lead in motor vehicle exports also makes a whole lot of cash exporting individual motor parts. However, the motor industry is cautious of possible NAFTA disturbance that could alter the face of this auto-exporting industry.

Computer Chips

The first’modern’ export to make the top-5 U.S. export categories is that of computer chips. Given the small size of the export, the majority of the product travel abroad via airfreight – 50% of that from just four airports in Los Angeles, Dallas, San Francisco and Cleveland.

What other products are also leading exports for the U.S.? Food, drink and feed has been the top value class when combined worth some $133bn. Soybeans made up $22bn of the, with poultry and meat just behind at $18bn.

Concerning services, travel and transport ($136bn), finance and insurance ($76bn) and intellectual property earnings ($49bn) accounts for the most.

Do You Have These Qualities of Rock Star Employees?

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Engagement numbers have not changed much in the years the Gallup Organization has been keeping track. In the United States, employee engagement numbers hover around 30 percent. In the rest of the world, the picture is even bleaker – only about 13% of employees are engaged.

What exactly are the traits of a rock star employee? Here are seven attributes which you will find in most members of that elusive group.

Responsible: Top actors take ownership of whatever project they’re working on and set high standards for their own performance. They’re only satisfied when your customers are singing your company’s praises. When they have a success, they make sure the others that helped and supported them along the way are also recognized for their contributions.

Optimistic: Regardless of what’s happening, they are programmed to search for the good in people, jobs, and situations. They are energetic, enthusiastic and confident in their job and how the members of their team work together. They look at obstacles as challenges to overcome as they’re excited to grow and open to change. They have a positive outlook and could be counted on to lighten up the room when they’re around.

Creative: Rockstar employees have the ability to look at all sides of a problem and think of a lot of new and exciting options. They are not afraid of failure, as they know that part of being successful is having to fail from time to time. They have the unique ability to use out-of-the-box thinking to develop new methods for looking at and solving problems.

Kind: Engaged employees have excellent people skills and have a broad network of people who know, like and trust them. They get to know people as individuals and abide by the “do unto others as THEY would have done unto them” rule.

Studious: Your best talent wants to be better tomorrow than they are today. Top actors invest in themselves and their skills so that they can grow and develop both professionally and personally. They love to learn, and they look for any opportunity they can to gain knowledge about a number of subjects. If they are not sure of something, they’ll do the research necessary to discover the solution.

Team players: Gallup shows that actively engaged employees have a strong network. Engaged employees focus on lifting others as they climb and enjoy sharing the spotlight of their achievements because they realize they did not do it alone. Although they may take the lead on projects, they have a very clear connection between staff activities and the team’s purpose. They allow others to enjoy the job and the journey with them.

Action-oriented: Typical workers make to-do lists. Rock stars set their priorities and get the work done. They don’t hesitate based on fear or indecision, they look at the situation and take action based on the information they have at the time they get it. Because”objects in motion tend to remain in motion,” rock stars decide to”fail forward” and keep the momentum going. Their enthusiasm for what they do helps them know when to compromise with others and when to stand firm.

Risk-taker: Natural leaders aren’t afraid to shake up the status quo. They make the choices necessary and push the limits of their comfort zone. They take bold action toward their objectives. They feel that if they aren’t making mistakes, they’re not learning. They love to suggest new ideas and new ways of thinking, and their fire inspires others to take their lead.

Take the time to notice when your ROCK STAR employees are accomplishing great things. Ask them for their ideas and learn from them. When you utilize the best practices learned from your actively engaged employees, you acknowledge their value to your organization and help the rest of your team move your organization ahead.

Thinking About Buying A Franchise?

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Are you someone who’s considering buying a franchise? While a great deal of people consider owning a franchise, not many take the opportunity to do a proper calculation of a franchise price. It turns out that there are several factors that influence the final cost of the franchise that means that each company will be different. However, whichever restaurant you are interested in, there are a few common costs which are the exact same in each circumstance. This includes the franchise fee, all build-out expenses, contractor fees, professional fees, signage, and your stock. It also requires you to have enough working capital to start and stay in business until the company can actually support itself. Let us take a moment to further discuss the common costs that come along with a franchise opportunity.


Every company will require that you pay the initial franchise fees. These fees cover the cost of training, support as well as site selection. The advantages (or items) that are included in these charges are different from one company to the next. In certain cases, these fees are simply an upfront licensing fee which gives the owner the right to use the corporation’s name. This is why it’s a fantastic idea to take the time to do research into what you will be receiving in return when paying your franchise fee.

This fee can vary from $20,000 to $50,000. However, there are some instances in which your charge may be less than $20,000. Those with reduced franchise fees are generally mobile or even home.


If you are interested in purchasing a franchise then you should check a professional franchise attorney. He or she will have the ability to help you review the Franchise Disclosure Document, better known as the FDD. They can also help you to better understand the franchise agreement. The amount you pay also comes down to how long you spend with your attorney.

Just make sure you keep a thorough and clear record from the very start. You might even consider hiring a professional accountant to keep an account specifically for your meetings. Not only can the accountant ensure that you don’t go over budget with your legal fees, but they can also make certain you have sufficient working capital.


The cash that you’ve got available from day to day is referred to as working capital. This amount has to be able to cover a particular length of time. This time period can range from two to three years-whenever your business starts to pick up.

The franchisor will usually provide estimates of the amount that you need, however, it’s a good idea to do your own research if you want to be certain that your calculations are based on your market rather than system averages.

4. Build-Out Costs

Build-out cost is another element that can vary from one franchise to another. Once you’ve decided on a location which the company approves, you’ll be able to determine the build-out costs. Including furniture, equipment, signage, and fittings. It may also include the professional fees for architectural drawings, contractor fees, protection, insurance, and landscaping. There’s one exception: home-based franchise; these franchises don’t have any build-out costs.

5. Supplies

You can not run your franchise without the proper supplies. This could be something as straightforward as plastic utensils to your everyday office supplies. Franchisors will usually provide a list of what is needed. This amount can vary, but an owner should expect to pay well over $100,000 in most cases.

6. Inventory

If you are purchasing a retail franchise, or any other franchise where you’re selling a particular solution, you must stock up on inventory. Once again, every franchise is different and has different requirements. You may be required to purchase between $20,000 and $150,000 worth of inventory.

7. Expenses While Coaching

In actuality, completing training is usually a requirement. This amount may also vary based on the needs of the people.

As you can see, having a franchise isn’t a straight-forward endeavor. If you would like to be successful with your purchase, then you need to understand all the different things that come into play fiscally. In cases of franchises such as Mcdonald’s, your total costs will amount to more than $900,000. However, with diligent research and realistic expectations, you should be able to secure a place with your chain of choice.