What I’ve learned this semester is that there is a departure from economics of the last century, including terms like third world countries, to new concepts like calculating happiness as a measurement for success. While I view this with both encouragement I also share a degree of skepticism that I want to take a minute to explain why. In this class, we’ve looked at several macro-picture topics such as the bottom billion. I see economics in terms of this, globalized business down to the local guy, but while I am optimistic that measuring happiness will open new doors for discovery I feel it is diverting attention away from production. I am a production person. I was raised that way and that’s how I approached business. What bothers me about exploring concepts such as happiness is the effect it will have on production. To me, production means being able to put food on the table. Its a trade-off. Time for money. That may be old school, but I certainly sleep better at night knowing everyone in a company is onboard, committed and willing to go that extra mile. I’ve grown companies by leaps and bounds, by millions of dollars, but did so with the help and recognition of the team, not just one person getting all the credit. I see happiness as too subjective, too influenced. I’ve seen employees give up their happiness, their hopes and dreams, whether that’s putting a kid through college or taking a cruise in the Bahamas, just to please someone’s happiness… and doing so by coercion, not willingly! Happiness is a wonderful thing, and the Declaration of Independence speaks of the pursuit of it, but unfortunately that’s all it is, a pursuit. Measuring happiness against hopefulness therefore is basically an illusion.