The weather in Eugene and beyond may be frightful of late, but we’re turning our attention to something—or more accurately someone—who tends to elicit joyfulness and warmth: the one and only Santa Claus.
Keeping track of all those kids and their wishes is a daunting task for anyone, yet Kris Kringle pulls it off each year with aplomb. The jolly fellow is a consummate businessperson, no doubt. One wonders where he gained such a complete skill set.
That is one long list. The old man has some impeccable bookkeeping skills, keeping track of both assets and liabilities with ease. Some would argue he occasionally goes over budget, but Santa has certainly never asked for a bailout.
Santa’s toy factory is widely regarded as one of the most streamlined in existence, with an almost unbelievable output.
Father Christmas knows his markets. Though he mostly trades on the spirit of the season and the good will of man, he has several international investments and always knows the exchange rates. Santa has thoroughly analyzed the risks and returns of gift giving, and he always comes out ahead.
Though their exact wages and benefits remain unclear, Santa’s elves are an assuredly merry bunch. Morale is high at the North Pole headquarters of Santa, Inc.
One thing we can likely all agree on: St. Nick has aced the marketing game. Who else can bring children to tears of joy with just a wink? What other marketing campaign has reached his level of success? The mere intonation of his name can inspire wonder, awe, and impeccable behavior.
In this way, we see Santa as nearly the full (and round) business package. But where did he acquire all this business acumen? A master of sustainability, Kringle eschews fossil fuel usage, instead using a top-notch team of mighty reindeer. His entrepreneurial skills are without question, and he is the leading marketer and supplier of bicycles, soccer balls, and baseball bats to kids age one to ninety-two.
We’re starting to wonder if he is actually an alumnus of the Lundquist College of Business.
Perhaps the man in red should consider green and yellow this year.
Cornelis A. "Kees" de Kluyver
Dean and James and Shirley Rippey Distinguished Professor