Dollars and Sense
by Col. Wm. C. Hunter
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Do not take on financial responsibilities until you see your way clear to meet the responsibilities, and in addition to meeting them, see to it that you have made an allowance for good measure.

Catching up calls for double effort and double work.


In proportion as a man is wise, he controls his anger.

Centuries ago the following truth was written: "Whom the gods would destroy they first make angry," and in the same era there was also given us another truth: "A soft answer turneth away wrath."

A man's judgment gets twisted, his ground becomes insecure and his point of vantage weakens when he becomes angry.

The man who keeps calm when the other fellow gets angry has infinitely the best of the matter.

Let the other fellow fret and stew and get red in the face, but you keep calm and you will win the fight every time.

Control yourself, change the subject, and absent yourself when anger shows.

Cultivate poise, refrain from lowering yourself to the methods of the ignorant, which is anger. By keeping your temper when your adversary gets angry you thereby show your superiority, and your adversary instinctively feels you are a bigger man than he is.

A cool head is wonderful capital for an employer or an employe.

Don't mistake coolness and poise for submissiveness and servility. Don't let people impose on you and take advantage of your good nature.

State your position in cool, well-weighed words, and carry conviction with them by your manner.

It takes two to make a quarrel. Whenever anger is present, do not be one of the two.


Precedent has caused many failures. We refuse to make a bold move and inaugurate a new system because we hate to break away from the methods established by successful predecessors.

We say "Let well enough alone." We forget that times change, and that conditions which made our competitors successful, may not now exist.

If you have the precedent habit it is an admission that you have not the brains to originate, and you are trying to take advantage of another's brains.

You remember the old fable of the lion and the jackass. The jackass was browsing on thistles in the desert. It took all his time to gather enough of the scanty vegetation to keep him alive. One day the jackass noticed the lion comfortably eating a lamb, whereupon he said "That's the scheme for me. I will do the same trick as Mr. Lion," and forth-with the jackass found a dead lion and covered himself with the lion's skin, hoping that with the lion's skin he would appear as a lion and thus be able to catch game in large portions, and relieve himself of this slow monotonous, hard work he had been used to. The jackass sallied forth, but he could not catch a lamb. He had copied the lion so far as physical appearances were concerned, but he did not have the brains of the lion, and he failed.

There are hundreds of wealthy business concerns today who are slowly dying from dry rot because they have not the nerve to break away from the precedent that built up their businesses. They let sentiment outweigh common sense. They maintain the same old lines and follow the same policy because that policy years before things made them successful.

Many manufacturers continue to advertise in publications which have long since lost their advertising value. These manufacturers have the habit, and on account of precedent they are afraid to break away. They do not recognize that since they started there are dozens of newer, brighter and better publications than the ones they are using.

Columbus, Marconi, Edison, Stevenson, Newton, Fulton, and hundreds of other originators would never have succeeded if they had followed precedent. They required strong courage to break away from accepted methods. Each of these men was told in so many words that the thing never had been done, and consequently could not be done.

Business men who throw aside precedent are more apt to succeed, for by throwing aside precedent they show they have originality instead of the ability to copy.


A financier and a general are much the same thing. The financier makes the dollars do the work at the best place, and the general does the same thing with his soldiers. The financier with plenty of money in the bank and the general with plenty of soldiers at his command are alike. They give the order and the thing is done, for they have the material to do the thing with. The difference between the good financier and the bad financier is like the difference between the good general and the bad one, the difference being that the good one makes a little go a long way, and gets the best results from the little under his command.

The cause of many failures is due to bad financing instead of bad business. The trouble is few business men know exactly "where they are at."

A detailed statement should be kept of all obligations. The business man should get along as far as possible without giving notes, and when he does give notes he should see to it that the notes are taken up when due.

The business man who overstocks shows he is a bad financier. The man who buys too much on possibilities makes a mistake.

As you go along this year you should make statistics of the receipts and expenses by the day, week, month and year. With these figures you can make up a budget of your receipts and expenses for the coming year with reasonable correctness.

Keep your resources well in hand. Buy often rather than buy in large quantities.

If you are owing money to the bank, have your plans arranged so that you can realize on your assets quickly.

The good general always plans his campaign to be ready for attack that may come through unexpected sources. The good financier is always ready for an attack on his finances.

The concerns from whom one buys may be prosperous. The bank with whom one deals may be flourishing, and yet without warning something happens and you are suddenly called upon to liquidate your indebtedness. You should be prepared for this sudden call.

Financing is an art, and you will never be a good financier unless you have had perplexing problems to solve. In order to solve problems you must have the pro and con, in other words, the details of your receipts and expenses. These figures should be put down plainly, with elaborate detail, if necessary, so you may count on your figures and make your plans accordingly. Preparing for emergencies is one of the first things the financier should understand.


While in another part of this book we show that ambition is one of the things that makes success, yet it must not be forgotten that discontent is another great factor in bringing about success.

When the young man quits school he has life before him and has ambition to succeed. It is not particularly necessary that we find out what his ambition is to start him on the right path. Let the young man get started at any thing. If he is ambitious and has ability in him to manage a business he will get there finally.

He may get started in the wrong line and this will make him discontented. The discontent will cause him to try another tack, and so long as discontent makes him change he will finally get into the right line by the process of eliminating those callings which make him discontented.

Time after time we find in reading the stories of successful business men that they have floundered around in the beginning of their career from one business or calling to another. Discontented with each of them they changed and changed and changed until they finally struck the thing best suited to them, and all the changes they made in the past were distinctly beneficial because of the experience they obtained.

If it were not for discontent many of the leaders in the business world today would still be on the farm or clerking in a country store.

Keep busy, young man, do the first thing that comes handy. Change your job if you are discontented, for no one can do his best work if his heart is not in it. When discontent causes you to change frequently you may be sure that some day you will strike your gait, and then ambition will fire you to stick at it.

When you get on the right track and are not discontented you have struck it right.

The Generalist

The chapter on "The Specialist" is almost inseparable from this chapter. One is the positive, the other the negative. What we have said about the specialist we could repeat by taking the opposite of the question for the generalist.

This one point, however, we wish to make clear, even at the risk of repetition. Do not be a generalist in business. If you divide your efforts your results will surely be divided. The business man who goes in many outside ventures will not get along as far in the matter of wealth as the man who does one thing well.

We hear about "The jack of all trades," but the aftermath of the jack of all trades is "master of none."

Only one concern in fifty succeeds in business, therefore it calls for your best efforts if you wish to succeed. It calls for a singleness of purpose.

If you make more money than is necessary in your business put out the money in some form of investment that will require little of your attention. Buy mortgages or real estate. Get stuff that you can put in the green box in the safety deposit vault and not have to worry about.

The stockbroker has a lot of unwritten history about the business man who divides his energies between his office and the ticker. The business man who is trying to make more progress than his competitor in business and at the same time trying to beat out the stock market is dividing his energies, and between the two occupations he is likely to fail. Be a generalist in pleasure and recreation, but not in business.

Our Aches and Pains

When we work hard with our body all day our backs ache and our muscles ache. This is all right, for Nature has given us sweet refreshing slumber to drive away the aches and pains so that on the morrow we are ready for the fray.

In proportion as we have endured these backaches and pains and are patient in our occupation, the aches will lessen until finally we have laid up a store of energy so that the aches will not bother us.

The backaches and muscle-aches and headaches we have, when they come from honest work performed for the benefit of those we love, are sweet aches and pains. They represent sacrifice, these aches and pains do, and sacrifice brings happiness. The only way to be truly happy is to do something for somebody, and doing something for somebody is making a sacrifice for somebody.

The aches and pains we have endured in performing labor for those we love is the best evidence of genuine sacrifice.

We gladly suffer when our efforts are appreciated, and when those for whom we work are grateful, but there is one pain that never lessens, and it is the pain that kills. That pain is a heartache, and the heartache comes from ingratitude.

After we have endured backaches and headaches for those we love and find the effort has not been appreciated, then comes the heartache, and that is the ache that kills.

Whenever anyone does something for you, your first concern should be to show appreciation.

Gratitude is one of the most priceless gems in nature's collection. There is nothing lower on the face of the earth than an ingrate and a snake's belly.


Many persons look upon the good dresser, and think that good dressing is an evidence of success. In dressing, as in everything else, the extremes should be avoided. The man who is temperate has the right idea. A man must be temperate in dressing as in all other things.

We have all seen the solicitor and the business man who look like a fashion plate or tailor's model. Each day he appears with a different suit. He wears the latest ties, the latest shoes, and appears in the height of fashion. This extra dresser is a four-flusher, for he is trying to appear as something that he is not. Grizzly Pete says "It ain't what's on a man but what's in him that counts."

In proportion as a man's character or mental training is lacking, he often tries to make up for it in dress. With some it is a case of ninety per cent. dress and ten per cent. man, and with others ninety per cent. man and ten per cent. dress.

In trying to find a word of cheer for the good dresser, the writer vainly endeavored to recall some successful business man who had climbed the ladder step by step through a period of years, during which he was always dressed in the height of fashion. We recall to mind several extreme dressers who are possessed of millions, but these millions were the result of accident or inheritance rather than ability. We cannot remember any instance of a plodder who started in with nothing and made his millions who during the operation dressed in extremes.

We have an autographed photograph of Marshall Field, and we venture to say that there are fifty men in Field's store more expensively dressed than Marshall Field was at the time this picture was taken, shortly before his death. Not that Marshall Field was poorly dressed, but that he was dressed like a gentleman. A gentleman does not wear extreme collars, extreme neckties, extreme coats. Marshall Field's clothes fitted him well, the goods were of splendid quality, but of modest design. Marshall Field was ninety per cent. man and ten per cent. dress.

When a man recognizes he has not the ability to make a name for himself on account of his brains, he resorts to dress in order to give him distinction.

The ability to dress in the extreme of fashion is an advertisement to the world that dress is your specialty, and if you are a specialist in dress you will not be a specialist in business.

Declare Monthly Dividends

Make it a rule to declare dividends every month. We venture to say to the business man that you are meeting all your fixed charges, paying your rent and employes, paying for postage stamps, lights, taxes and all other fixed charges. When the Government put a two cent tax on your checks you paid that tax. You certainly can add one more fixed charge to your business, and that fixed charge should be a percentage of your cash receipts.

It is usually a difficult thing to draw your profits out of your business in a lump at the end of the year, but if you draw your profits out in monthly installments, you can do so without any burden.

The business man should figure what percentage of his cash receipts is profit, and this percentage should be deducted every month, less a little leeway to make the matter easier. Make the percentage a fixed charge and put this money away in a special account as a reserve fund if you do not wish to draw the dividends out of your business. If you have this reserve fund drawn out in monthly installments, you are ready for attack if your creditors call on you suddenly.

If you have a snug little sum in a separate bank as a reserve sufficient to withstand any attacks on your business, your step will be more elastic, you will have more confidence in yourself, you will have less worry than if you are keeping your nose to the grindstone and have no reserve.

There is some amount between a dollar a week and a thousand dollars a week which you can draw out of your business without affecting it. If you make this a fixed charge you will take care of it, and you will arrange your business and your purchases so that this fixed charge will be properly taken care of each month. You will trim your expenses a little closer, and your business will thus benefit by having this fixed charge.

Nearly every failure is due to sudden calls of creditors or refusal of the bank to extend further credit. This fact shows plainly the necessity of having a reserve fund.

Take your figures for several years back and find what percentage of the total receipts was profit. If, for instance, your business earned $9,000 and your total sales were $100,000, then 9% of your receipts represents profits. You can therefore declare a monthly dividend of 8%, and when Christmas comes you will have an extra dividend, being the accumulated 1% each month you did not draw out in dividends.


If it were not for debt most banks would go out of business, for banks live because debt is a recognized factor in business.

The plan of getting rich through saving is a very difficult and practically impossible road to wealth.

The man who is working himself out of debt puts in better effort and longer hours into his business than the man who does not owe a cent. Go in debt reasonably and carefully, and you can make money with other people's money.

Money has a fixed value in itself in the matter of earning capacity. This fixed value is 5% or 6% or 7% as the case may be. One who puts his money in securities gets his money which the cash earns without effort on his part. The hustler, however, can make 10%, 15% or 20% on the money, plus his hard work. Therefore there is an opportunity for a hustler to borrow money at 5% or 6%, and with that money and his energy earn 10% or 15%.

The active man can therefore pay 6% per annum for money, and use that money to discount monthly bills at from 2% to 5%.

The building and loan association, the installment firms and monthly payment real estate concerns show what people can accomplish who go into debt. Thousands of families now live in their own homes because they went into debt. Few of these families would have homes if they started in on the saving-the-money-first plan and bought for cash.

Don't go in too deeply. Calculate your earnings in business. Allow a wide margin for discount on your figures. Hard times and unlocked for reverses come, therefore you should play safe. Go into debt on a 25% or 50% basis of what you are reasonably sure you can pay.

Up to forty years of age a man is sowing and tilling, and after forty he reaps. The farmer goes into debt during the spring and summer, and reaps in the fall.

Very few of our great men had much money before they were forty years old. Up to forty is the debt period. Up to forty a man pays interest; after forty he collects interest.

Business calls for the hardest kind of work up to forty or fifty. After that time the man makes up in judgment and experience what he lacks in physical activity.

Work hard until you are forty. Go into debt and make the money you have borrowed earn money. After forty make money by investing your funds in sound securities, so you will run no risk of losing what you have worked so hard for during your younger days.

The average banker is over forty. The hustling business man who borrows is usually under forty. Nature gives the young man ambition, ability and willingness. Nature gives the middle aged man judgment, experience and conservatism.

Forty years will determine what is in a man. If he has the stuff in him to earn a competence at forty, he has usually acquired the judgment and experience to keep it after he is forty.

The man born with a golden spoon never knows what hard work is. He does not go into debt because he has plenty of money for his requirements. At forty he has not the experience of his brother who was born in an environment of hard work and little money. The law of compensation thus bestows a subsidy on the poor boy and a handicap on the rich one to even things up. The poor boy goes into debt and works hard; the rich one lets the money do the work for him.

There is no joy or happiness in the possession of things we have not worked for, so while we envy the rich who have never worked we should take satisfaction in the law of compensation which gives us a subsidy in the way of ability to work hard and earn money, so that later on we may enjoy the money better than our rich friend who has never worked for his money.

Don't go into debt on the wholesale plan, hoping to make a big coup. Don't try to be a millionaire. Don't set too big a mark. Have your ideal advancement, no matter how little that advancement is. If you go forward each week or each year you will find at forty or fifty that your substance piles up much faster than you imagine. From forty to fifty years of age most fortunes are made. From twenty to forty your efforts have been foundation work, and the foundation does not show up much above the ground. From forty to fifty you are building the superstructure, and when you commence building that your progress seems more rapid.

Healthy indebtedness is a great incentive to hard work and a material benefit in building character and gaming experience that in later years will be of untold value to you.


One of the weaknesses of the human race is envy. No one is entirely free from envy, although the true philosopher who has studied himself and has things sized up correctly is nearly free from envy.

Human kind have three measures for gauging the other fellow. We measure the other fellow either by his knowledge—which is brains, by his pedigree—which is birth, or by the money he has accumulated—which is boodle. These three Bs are like three stars in the sky. The first star—Brains is usually the dimmest, but it is really the brightest star of all. Mankind is prone to look at the brighter stars of birth and boodle.

These three stars of Brains, Birth and Boodle, are three aristocracies. The first aristocracy has no less authority than that of the Almighty. The aristocracies of birth and boodle are sham counterfeits gotten up by man. They do not mean anything when put into the crucible and tested by fire.

The aristocracy of brains differs from the aristocracies of birth and boodle as the sun differs from the jack-o-lantern, or as the music of the soul differs from the bray of the burro, or as a pure woman's love differs from the stolen affections hashed up by the fourth husband.

Brains like air and water, are not always appreciated until we have analyzed and investigated thoroughly. The foolish man thinks champagne is the finest drink. The wise man knows water is the best drink, even though water costs nothing. The foolish man has for his ideal—money or birth. The wise man takes off his hat to brains.

The measure of a man is his brain and not his birth or his boodle. Thought, reason and knowledge are possible to the man who has a brain. No man can buy brains, and truly he is an aristocrat of the highest order who is blessed with a good brain.

Some people whose ancestors came over with the Pilgrim Fathers have a picture of the Mayflower in their homes and they seem to take a great deal of pride in the picture of the Mayflower. There seems to be a halo around the Mayflower. The descendants of the passengers of that ship look upon the picture of the Mayflower as a sort of seal or guarantee of the good qualities of their forefathers, and consequently, being direct descendants they take unto themselves a lot of credit for something in which they had no hand in the making.

The Mayflower was afterwards used as a slave ship, but our disciples of birth do not want to know about this. Some of the passengers in the Mayflower performed acts and violated laws and conducted themselves in such a manner that would cause people of these days to be put in jail for the same offenses. Some of these good ancestors of the present descendants of birth burned witches at the stake.

Time wipes out a lot of things, and this is probably as it should be, but certainly it is true that the world is progressing and the good man of today is probably better and broader than some of these glorious ancestors to whom so many take off their hats. Some of our forefathers in Europe were little less than pirates and buccaneers. Their descendants today knowing that they can make great claims with little fear of contradiction, extol the virtue of their forefathers and complacently take on a superior air. They have thought over the matter of birth so much that they really think they are superior beings.

Grizzly Pete of Frozen Dog, Idaho, doesn't take much stock in the aristocracy of birth. He says, "It ain't what's on a man and it ain't what his father was that counts. The only thing to judge a man by is what's in him and what kind of brains he has."

One thing about this glorious Western country of ours is that a man gets credit for and he is punished by his own individual acts. It doesn't make any difference how far back his pedigree runs, if he doesn't make good himself, people have no use for him.

The heritage of birth is mighty thin fabric and mighty weak material for a man to use in making a cloak of exclusiveness to put around him.

We anticipate that some of our readers will take exception to our attitude on the matter of birth. We wish to be plainly understood that the matter of good birth and good ancestors is a good thing to have. The writer has a pedigree that would be his passport into the aristocracy of birth if he chose to belong to that lodge. Your good ancestors is no handicap. It is a credit to you, but mark this down well: You, yourself, are entitled to no credit for any acts of your ancestors. Your measure is and should be taken for what your own net worth is.

The aristocracy of boodle is the slimmest aristocracy of all. Yet there are more people who try to get into that lodge than any other. The possession of the dollar seems to be the ambition of everyone, and usually the first thing we try to find out about a man is "how much is he worth?" The thinker, however, knows that the possession of money doesn't make a man any better than his neighbor who has no money—their morals and their acts being even.

Brains. That's the true aristocracy. The professor in college who has spent a lifetime in study and has devoted his talents to uplifting mankind is an aristocrat. He may be getting two or three thousand dollars a year, while his brother with lesser knowledge is getting ten times that much in another vocation. The aristocracy of brains always has been, is now and ever will be the enduring aristocracy. Even those who belong to the aristocracies of birth and boodle find they are sham counterfeits and many of them turn to study and to good impulses hoping they may get into the lodge of the aristocracy of brain.

In business the aristocracy of birth or the aristocracy of boodle is a decided handicap. They make the individual think he is superior and he is above doing things which seem to him trivial, because he thinks he is a superior being. The man with brains, however, digs as well as climbs. Without brains, business would go to the dogs, for if business were conducted by men of birth and boodle without brains, you can easily see that the whole fabric would fall to pieces.

Backbone and Wishbone

In proportion as a man's backbone weakens his wishbone seems to develop.

The ten dollar a week man spends his time saying: "I wish I had the luck other people have." He says: "I wish I had this place, or I wish I had that job." He is ever wishing.

Things in our body, whether muscle or bone, develop by usage, and if we use the wishbone all the time it will develop into huge proportions. On the other hand if we develop our backbone and use it frequently, we may not have cause to use the wishbone so much.

Brace up. Stand erect. Strengthen your backbone and, with it, your jaw bone.

Say "I will" instead of "I wish." The world bestows her prizes on men with backbone and the blanks on those who use their wishbone.

Do Good

Doing good is planting seed, the harvest may not show at present but in the future you are going to reap it.

A man is paid back precisely in the same coin he pays out. If he plants weeds or mean impulses the harvest will be weeds and mean impulses. If he plants seed of good deeds he will harvest good deeds.

Centuries ago it was said "Cast your bread upon the waters and it will return to you many-fold."

The man who is doing good as he goes along, who is lending help, kindly counsel and encouragement will find the world is a pretty good place to live in after all. As he journeys along through life he will find the good he has done in the past has flourished and returned to him in greatly increased proportions, like the bread cast upon the waters.

It is not only the good one actually gets for the good, he has done, but it is the profit that comes in the way of happiness he gets for his actions. The true way to obtain happiness is to do something for somebody. You get back out of the general exchequer of good in the world full payment for the good you have done, plus a profit of happiness which comes from the very doing of good.

The Get-Away

After you have driven the nail home make your get-away.

Many a solicitor has lost his prestige because, after having accomplished his point, he hung on.

It is quite an art to know when to make the get-away. Study your customer carefully, and when you have made your point clear and your proposition is presented to him in the best possible manner, then get away.

The bore is a bore because he does not know how to get away. The solicitor is always welcome if it is known he is not a hanger-on, and that he gets in and gets out quickly.

Double Equipment

For the employe there is nothing better to possess than double equipment, by which we mean the ability to do two things well.

From the employer's standpoint nothing will stand his business in such good stead as to have his employes doubly equipped.

In the printing business, for instance, the old time printer knew how to set type, lock up forms and to run a press.

Nowadays we seldom find a printer in the broad sense of the word.

In the big printing establishment we find the various branches of the printing trade have employes who are specialists at one thing. In the printing trade the craftsman is either a compositor a proof-reader, a make-up man, a pressman or a binder.

The employe who can set type and also run a press is a decided advantage to the employer. The writer knows a certain publishing house whose every employe is doubly equipped. The rule of the proprietor is that every job or branch of the business must have more than one person competent to run it, and that every person must know how to do two things.

Double equipment on the part of the employe gives the employer great resources.

When sickness, accident or other causes prevent the employe from filling his accustomed place, then the proprietor can call on others who have the double equipment, to fill in the gap.

The employe who is following a particular line in the establishment should acquaint himself with some other branch of the business or some other trade, if he is a craftsman.

The employe who is doubly equipped is decidedly at an advantage over the employe who knows but one thing.


Initiative is simply the willingness and ability on the part of an employe to do things that are not simply routine, to do things he is not told to do, to look for opportunities to help the boss or to improve the business wherever possible.

The employe who has no initiative in his make up is going around a circle and when you go around a circle you don't go forward. There is no one thing outside of honesty, ability and hard work that will help the employe to go forward like initiative.

In every great business there are many opportunities for the employe to do things he is not told to do and when an employe gets the initiative habit he is not long in attracting the attention of the boss.

Look over the work you are doing, study the matter carefully, figure out some plan whereby the value of the work you are doing will be increased.

Find a chance to lessen the expense in your department.

Put into practice some idea that will increase the receipts.

Acquaint yourself with the operations of other employes in similar work. Wherever you find a plan better than yours, take advantage of it.

Keep your eyes wide open and you will find many opportunities for doing things you are not told to do.

Every employe should carry out to the letter the directions given him by the boss and in addition to this he should have initiative, which is doing things the boss did not tell him.

It is the plus or initiative in a man's make-up that helps him to the front.

Night Work

It is always a question among experienced business men whether night work and Sunday work help the game of business.

Of course there are occasions when a job must be finished or work completed within a specified time and if you are behind with your hauling, it is necessary to turn all your resources into a singleness of purpose to get the thing done.

The trouble is, however, that many business men figure on this night work as part of the regular scheme and in this they overdo the matter.

The law of compensation says that a man is good for just so much work and if he spreads the work over into longer hours the intrinsic value of each hour is lessened.

A man who habitually takes work to his home to finish and counts upon these extra hours, will soon find the value of his work decreases.

We should all remember that we should work while we work and play while we play.

Work hard during your business hours, conserve your energies, but outside of business hours, let play, study and recreation occupy your time.

If you go home from business at night and forget the things you have been doing in the day and use your time for the things in life outside of business, the next day, when you go to your office, you can make things fly.

It is proverbial that the busy man is the one to go to if you wish things done promptly.

Those of us who were born and reared in the country know a familiar type that is to be found in every country town.

He may be a carpenter or blacksmith, or may run a repair shop of some kind. We find him going to the post office in the middle of the day to get his mail. We frequently find him in the back part of the country store playing checkers. At other times he is watching a horse trade. Again he is arguing politics. This man does not get in over four or five hours' simon pure hard work in a day.

You take a job to this man and it will drag days and weeks. You become impatient at the delay. You get after the man and his answer is that he has not the time.

It is practically a truism that those who offer the excuse that they have not the time are really the ones that have the time.

Some of our friends treat us shabbily in the matter of correspondence and when you get a letter from one of them, he says: "Excuse me for not writing sooner, but I really have been so busy that I have not had the time to write."

As a matter of fact it takes five or ten minutes to write a letter and the person who pleads for forgiveness through lack of time has wasted a hundred times the minutes necessary to write a letter.

The busy man, accepts his duty as a matter of course, a ranges his correspondence and work in systematic order and goes at the thing, hammer and tongs, and gets the thing done.

Night work is usually evidence that the man does not do his work properly in the day time and he is like our friend in the country who wastes time in the day and tries to make up for it by night work.

The thing to do is to work hard in the day time and rest at night.


Several years ago, our friend Elbert Hubbard wrote a little sermonette entitled "Carrying the Message to Garcia." The story was simply this: President McKinley called an orderly and gave him a letter and said: "Deliver this letter to General Garcia."

The employe did not stand around and ask a lot of fool questions about the trains and things. He put on his hat and duster and he delivered the letter to Garcia. These facts were stretched out in many words and made a little booklet. That booklet reached the sale of more than a million copies.

It seemed to make a hit with business men throughout the country. A certain railroad bought and gave a copy to every employe. Business men followed the example. The great sale of the book and the wide-spread interest it created would seem to indicate that carrying the message to Garcia was an unusual thing and so remarkable that it attracted attention.

As a matter of fact the whole theme of the story was simple obedience.

There are thousands of institutions in this country who have employes who will carry the message to Garcia.

Richard Harding Davis, you remember, was dining with friends in London. The discussion was along the lines of obedience and the like.

On a wager he called a messenger boy, gave him a letter addressed to his fiancee in Chicago, told the messenger boy to deliver the letter to the lady and bring back an answer. That fifteen year old boy carried the message to Garcia, or in other words to Mr. Davis' sweetheart.

The Colonel of a regiment has under him about twelve hundred men. Directly under him are his majors, and then come the captains, lieutenants, sergeants, corporals and privates. The first rule in the army is obedience of orders without question.

If obedience were subject to question on the part of the subordinates, the colonel could win no battles.

When your superior gives an order, the thing to do is to carry it out. If the order is wrong you will not be to blame, but your superior will suffer.

There are times, of course, when an order is given that is manifestly impracticable and initiative on the part of the employe might save trouble.

On the other hand, an executive would be greatly handicapped if his orders were subject to interpretation and analysis by his subordinates.

The executive may give an order and in the giving have in his own mind the relation of this order to some other order he has given in an entirely different department and upon the proper execution of all the orders given through the various departments depends the ultimate success of his plan.

The thing for the employe to do is to obey orders willingly, quickly and to the letter.

The employe is not blamed when he does his duty.

It is a source of great satisfaction to the boss to know he has dependable employes and that when he gives an order the thing is done so far as further effort on his part is concerned.

Pay Day

We have all tried all sorts of plans regarding pay day, but the plan most satisfactory to all concerned is to pay each Tuesday or each Monday for the previous week. If the nature of your business is such that Monday is an unusually busy day, then Tuesday should be your pay day.

Monday is usually called blue Monday, because the employes blot out some of the sunshine on Sunday by thinking of the hard week's work ahead of them. Much of the blueness is driven away, however, if in looking forward they know that Monday or Tuesday they will get their pay checks.

The old fashioned habit of paying off Saturday nights is a bad one, especially if most of the employes are men.

Many men are weak and it is difficult for them to pass a lot of saloons on Saturday night without the money in their pockets burning a hole.

The Saturday pay day may mean that a percentage of your employes will not show up on Monday morning. Many men will go on a spree on Saturday night on the theory that they can rest up on Sunday, who would not think of going on a spree on Monday night or Tuesday night, for it would interfere with the work next day.

The writer does not know of a single concern that has adopted this Monday or Tuesday pay day plan and practiced it for a reasonable time without finding it works admirably. Try it in your business and you will not go back to the Saturday pay day.


We will not indulge in the proverbs handed out by the savings bank in the matter of saving. We are not pessimistic when we say that no man ever became wealthy through the savings bank plan of putting away a certain amount each week. We will say, however, that there is no better training for the employe than this one thing of saving. Saving a part of your weekly income and putting it away, if carried on for a number of years becomes a habit and it means that you will keep your expenses within your income. It is the saving habit that makes the benefit, for later on when you are in business the habit stands you in good stead and teaches you the value of having a reserve.

By all means, put away a certain amount each week. If it is not a dollar, put away fifty cents. If that is too much, put away half of it, or even ten cents a week.

Have some amount as a fixed charge in your operations and put this amount in the savings bank. Later on your balance will grow and you will have much satisfaction in watching its development to better proportions.

Habitual saving makes you careful in the things you do. It teaches you the relationship between principal and interest. It shows you that when you buy something useless and pay ten dollars for it that it is costing you interest each year to maintain it.

The man who does not save is pretty sure to live beyond his means and some day trouble or affliction will come and he will be out of a job and then he appreciates the difference between the butterfly and the bee.

When you haven't anything to fall back upon, the world is a mighty blue place. When you have money in the bank it is a mighty good place to live in.

Waiting For Success

It takes a good poker-player to know when to lay down his hand.

It's a wise business-man who knows when to quit a forlorn hope.

It's all right to build up a business. It is all wrong to play a losing game in business for a succession of years in the hopes of ultimate success.

As years go by the business man is establishing matters on a firmer and more solid foundation. Sales generally increase; the volume of the business gradually grows greater. This fact is responsible for many business men continuing their business at a loss, lured on by the hope of final success. It's all right to build a reputation and to be patient, but when the odds are against you and by all the changes you make and all the brains and ingenuity you put into your business, you cannot turn it into a profitable basis, then get out of that business and start something new.

It's all right to build, provided that as you go along you are making a living profit, but dogged determination to play a losing game year after year is not to a man's credit.

Every man has some particular channel in which his talents will fit and produce good results. If your business goes along year after year at a loss, it is evident that your talents are not in the right channel.

The great thing in business is that it shall respond quickly and show signs of life right away. If it does not, then the business is wrong.

The shores of the great ocean of business are strewn with wrecks which have been dashed to pieces on the rocks sailing for that false beacon light, "keep everlastingly at it brings success."

This saying is true, providing you are making expenses and some profit as you go along, but to keep everlastingly at it when your business shows a loss means failure.

The thing that lures many on is the increased sales. Meanwhile, the expenses are increasing proportionately, and if these two lines are always parallel, there is no hope of your making a success. Better quit before you get too deep in the hole and have a lot of "dead horses" to pay for.

It's all right to have ambition, tenacity and patience in business and to look forward to the far future as crowning success of your efforts, but it's all wrong unless you are paying expenses and making a living while doing these things.

Our Sons

The noblest and most important work we have to do is the training and teaching of the coming generation.

The successful business man has no more difficult problem to solve than what he will do with his son.

It is a fact that the greatest successes in the business world today are those men who had to start in the battle early, and fight their way to the front.

The successful business man usually tries to arrange matters so that his son will not require to go through the hard working school of experience he himself attended, and in this the business man rather goes to the other extreme in that he tries to make things easy for his boy.

As the twig is bent so the tree is inclined. The young mind is plastic and capable of receiving impressions, and we know that the impressions made in our youth are lasting all our days.

The problem in the country is not so difficult, for there are so many things to do about the home that the young country boy usually has plenty of chores and duties to perform.

Occupation is a decided blessing and a present benefit to a boy.

People in the cities have all creature comforts about the homes, transportation facilities are ample, the homes are heated by steam, stores are in abundance, people buy from day to day, and every little convenience is at hand to keep the scheme of living going along smoothly.

Because the city boy is surrounded with schools and the comforts of home he has much time on his hands. The boy is active, and if his activity is not turned on useful things, it will be turned on useless things. The young boy goes to the grammar school, and the daylight hours, outside of school hours, are devoted to play. This is right and as it should be, but when the boy gets along to twelve or fourteen years of age, the parents should arrange for him some little duties, some regular task to perform. The youngster will get accustomed to this, and it is decidedly beneficial. As the boy enters the high school he finds his hours shorter and his leisure hours longer.

The high school period is a most important one in the boy's life, and the father should see to it that the high school boy is occupied for several hours each day, either in his own place of business or in some other establishment.

There is no way of teaching a boy the value of money like having him work for money.

Arrange to pay your boy so much an hour for the duties he performs. Have his occupation regular, talk with him about what he has done during the day, be a companion to the boy, and soon you will notice that he evinces interest in the things he is doing, and as time passes, ambition is fired in his breast, and when the time comes for him to enter the threshold of business he has been prepared for the work.

It is strange that while we parents realize the importance of education, we pay so little attention to the boy while he is going to school. We should keep in touch with the boy's teachers and with the boy himself, taking an interest in his studies. The business man as a rule drifts apart from his son during his younger years.

There is nothing that will help the boy so much as being a companion to him, being interested with him in the things he does, whether work or study. Fathers and sons should be comrades.

A close companionship between father and son is not only a great satisfaction and source of happiness to each of them, but is decidedly beneficial to both.

By all means have some regular occupation for your boy while he is going to school. Keep in close touch with him. Explain to him the things he does not understand. Show him the great possibilities ahead of him if he does right, and the impossibility for him to succeed if he does wrong.


The young man who is expecting to get a fat job through pull is working on a false basis. The young man whose objective is to get a snap shows he has not ambition, and surely this young man will occupy inferior positions as long as he gets a job through pull.

There is a legitimate pull in business, and that is activity and ability. Don't look for snaps. Snaps are merely traps. Men are not paid for snaps, but for snap.

The average young man just out of college looks for a job through the pull of his father or some relation, and in this he is making a great error. The best way to get a job is to get it without pull through your own energy and aggressiveness.

The best jobs are obtained through push and not pull.

The City Hall and Government buildings all have the word "pull" on the front door, and in direct contrast with this you will notice the front doors of the successful business institutions are marked "push."


It is surprising to see the extent to which gossip is carried on among business men. The funny papers always refer to women and the members of the sewing societies as gossips of the first class, but if the gossip going around business circles could be tabulated, we are sure the sewing society would have the joke on us.

It is a footless thing to spend valuable time in idle gossip, for the gossip is seldom a successful business man.

Gossip takes hold of some men to such an extent that most of their waking hours are spent in finding out something to tell to someone else, and thus leaves but little time for business.


Many business men seem to think that bribes are efficient helps. It is not so. The moment you bribe a person you acknowledge your dishonesty by paying for his dishonesty, and you may be sure that the bribe habit will grow; the demands of the men accepting the bribe will grow to alarming proportions. For every dollar you make by bribing someone, you are losing ten dollars in other ways, especially in your own self respect and satisfaction.

The moment you give a bribe you are under obligations, and some day or other the facts will be brought out and you will suffer the consequences of your own weakness.

Underhand, clandestine information you get is no more than dishonesty on your part. You can get better information and accomplish your purpose more surely by going direct to a competitor, stating your case plainly, and announcing your abhorrence of underhand methods. Your competitor will appreciate you more for your fairness, and he will go out of his way to give you information when you have shown you are square.


Few young men realize the advantage of learning stenography. We all know the young man who writes shorthand comes in touch with the boss at once, and while acting as amanuensis or secretary is getting a schooling that money could not buy. He is going through and becoming familiar with business as it actually exists.

He sees the decisions made by his employer, and he unconsciously absorbs methods which would be almost impossible for him to learn were it not for his proximity to the boss.

Shorthand is decidedly beneficial, first—because it is a good training for the mind; second—it is a help all through one's life. It enables him to take down memoranda and keep notes of verbal transactions; it enables him to get in the private office, and to be in the middle of the nerve centers of business.

Some of the greatest men in this country were shorthand writers. The stenographer who is alert soon gets to the center of the business; he soon has responsibilities given him by the boss, and is in direct line for promotion.


Here is a type we run across every day in business. We see the apparently well man taking out a pill box or a bottle of medicine as he sits down to lunch. We ask him what is the matter, and he proceeds to tell us about his bodily ills and infirmities.

Many men seem to take a keen delight in having something the matter with them. They go to a physician, though often the disease is practically mental.

You can't get health out of a glass bottle. The man who is taking medicine all the time is going at things wrong end to. If his stomach is out of whack he should change his method of living rather than to try to cure his dyspepsia with stuff that comes in a bottle.

The man who needs a tonic before he can eat a lunch had better take plenty of air and exercise than to take poisonous drugs into his system.

If you are a smoker and find you have no appetite for lunch, give up cigars in the forenoon, and you will notice an immediate difference when you sit down to the noonday meal.

The hypochondriac imagines he has things the matter with him, and he becomes confirmed in his belief, he finds that so long as he lives he has something the matter with him. He no sooner gets cured of one than something else attacks him. There is no medicine like air and exercise and occupation. The man who gives in to trifling ailments is in a sad plight. He is never happy unless he is sick. He is unreasonable, and he is the last one to appreciate what can be done by a man who cures himself through the mental processes.

We all know that we can take a perfectly well man and pre-arrange to have a dozen of his friends on a given day greet him with some remark about his ill appearance. That man will be sick before the tenth man accosts him.


Politics is a losing game. Every man owes it to himself and to his family and to his country to take an interest in politics to the extent of getting out to the primaries and voting for the right man, and help to get good men in office. But when a man carries politics to extremes or mixes it with his business, his business is sure to suffer.

There are two kinds of politics—the honest kind and the grafting kind. The honest politician gets very slight remuneration for the time and energy he spends, and the grafting politician sooner or later winds up in the soup through his dishonest practices.

There is no greater danger to business than to have the proprietor spend much of his time in politics. The upright business man will not descend to the things practised by the dishonest politician, and the sharp business man who has no compunctions on this score will make a loss in his business.

The law of compensation surely comes in here, for in proportion as a man plays politics his business is bound to suffer.


Twenty-five years ago profanity was found on every side. Today you find it only among laborers. Business men won't allow profanity.

Swearing goes with lying. The truthful man can look you in the eye and chisel out his words and you know he means it.

The liar gets angry and swears, and he is a bluff.

Truth doesn't need curse words to make it stick.

Some great men swear and many small men swear. Usually, however, the truly great man doesn't swear.

Men who think, men who study and analyze, seldom swear.

Swear words are usually used as fillers in sentences. Some men have limited knowledge of adjectives so they resort to swearing.

Mark this when you hear a man firing a volley of profanity in rapid succession—You lose respect for that man!

Profanity is an easier habit to acquire and harder to give up than its distant relative, slang.

Slang has its value for it has taken place of much profanity.

Slang and profanity, and logic and thought don't mix well together. The more profanity, the less brains in your make-up. Profanity is a hold-back.


System is all right so long as it lessens labor. Generally system is complex and increases fixed charges.

The system of copying every letter is a waste of time. Not once in a thousand cases do you require to refer to a letter.

Have fixed rules and prices and you won't have to refer to letters.

When you do copy a letter copy it on the back of the letter you are answering. Use a carbon sheet.

Have Simplicity your rule instead of System.

System has tangled many institutions.

Beware of system that makes more work.

Don't clutter up your office with a lot of useless data and wagon loads of old letters and records.

Rule of Gold

Centuries ago Confucius was walking through the woods soliloquizing and analyzing and sizing up things in solitude. While thus engaged he was waylaid by two Chinese peasants. These men had heard of Confucius' philosophy, but they could not make much out of it, for Confucius used words beyond their limited understanding. These men, with raised clubs, halted Confucius and said to him: "Our minds are small. We do not understand the things you say. Tell us how to live. Make your story short or we will slay you. We can only remember as much as you can tell in a moment. Therefore, stand on one foot and tell us quickly what we are to do. We can only remember what you can tell while standing on one foot."

Confucius stood on one foot and said: "Sing, fat, bong, lung, looy," which, being interpreted, means "what you would like others to do to you, do to them."

This is the golden rule which has been handed down through centuries. It has been alloyed and simulated. It has been attacked, but, like all pure gold, it has endured forever. There is no line of action we can suggest or anything that will prove more valuable to the young man or old man through life than the golden rule.

The golden rule is not theoretical, but a wholly practical help, and so in closing this series of talks with you, the writer feels that the essence of all the logic, good advice and philosophy may be summed up in the following:

"Do unto others as you would have others do unto you."

In saying good-bye we suggest that you particularly remember the key to knowledge, which is O.R.B., and which means Observe, Reflect and Benefit, and the practice of the following: Work, Horse Sense and Golden Rule.


My Symphony



I have set my mark at Truth, My purpose fixed, I shall not hesitate; Ever on and on again I go toward the goal of my ambition; I shall not turn aside or pause. The pleadings of the Siren, The wiles of the Devil, The threats of mine Enemies, Shall not make my Purpose change. Obstacles may block my path And Darkness blur my way. But ever firm with Right my guide I shall keep pushing on. I may not reach my grand Ideal, But be that as it may, The journey to it surely will Be a pleasant one; And should I fall upon the way, My face shall be toward the place I started for. Truth is Right and Right is Truth, Wrong shall surely fail; I shall not be discouraged At Clouds or Storms. I know the Sun doth shine, It beams somewhere tho' I see it not. I fear not but the end of Time Will show all Things that are, are best For the Eternal plan. Truth endureth and Lies shall not obtain For any length of time. In Shadow Land are upstretched hands And, midst the noise of this Great World Are feeble cries for help; My ear shall practice to hear such calls, My hands shall train to lift the fallen; Noble men and women who are pushed aside Need champions for their cause; Man, where'er he is or what he be Is none the less my brother And needs the strong to cheer him on. What we extend in help and cheer, Brings its reward in Happiness. It is not for me to say or think Look out for myself first; The bird, the beast, the stream that flows, The hills, the fields, the land, the sea, Are Parts, are Things like me, And all belong to one Grand Plan; The stars, the moon, the sky, And endless space as well, Are Parts of one machine, That runneth by but One Grand Power Of which I am in truth a part, An Atom though I be. All things that are, are best— This much Truth I know, Though why things are I can't explain, My Vision still is dim. All answers will be given out When time shall be no more, And so I keep a-plodding on, And on and on my way; My face is to the Light, My heart doth sing for Joy; I strive to do the best I can each day In Act and Thought and Word; I know not just the plan of things that are But back of all is Truth, And Truth I seek; I shall not know all Truth Until the great Revealing Time.

Col. Hunter's Symphony is printed on heavy parchment paper. Illustrated in colors. Size 9 x 12 inches. It is suitable for framing or may be hung on the wall with ribbon. Price, postpaid, 25 cents a copy.

Another Colonel Hunter Book

This book is full of pathos and humor. It is all stories and sketches depicting life in the far West. It tells of the doings of Grizzly Pete, Joe Kip and other inhabitants of Frozen Dog, Idaho, where Colonel Hunter has his beautiful ranch. It breathes the spirit of the mountains and the forest. In Dollars and Sense you have read the business side of Colonel's life. In Frozen Dog Tales you get his life as he sees it while close to nature.

The book is much larger than Dollars and Sense. It is bound in fancy cloth covers in colors. It has 200 pages and one or more pictures on every page in colors.

If you like Dollars and Sense, you will love Frozen Dog Tales. It touches your heart strings and the next moment convulses you with laughter.

The price of Frozen Dog Tales is $1.00 per copy, postpaid.

Address HUNTER & CO., Oak Park, Ill.

COL. HUNTER'S Autographed Motto

We want every reader of Dollars and Sense to have one of these brass mottoes.

The illustration below shows the size.

The autographed motto is engraved and enameled. It has a hole in the center to tack it up.

The motto can either be worn as a pocket piece, or it may be tacked up on your desk, on your dresser, or on the wall.





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