Ranking States for “Business”

Published On: April 27th, 2022|Categories: Blog|

I saw a survey result, where based on recent polling of nearly 700 CEOs and business owners from every U.S. state, Texas and Florida were the best states for doing business.

Really? After seeing those two states in the news recently how could that be?

Looking up the definition of business, I saw the term business:

refers to an organization or enterprising entity engaged in commercial, industrial, or professional activities.


the term business can also be used to define the efforts and activities of individuals to produce and sell goods and services for profit.

I am not sure where the 600 and something CEOs queried were located, but it appears that “best for business” was synonymous with the entity definition rather than the individuals definition.

I have been to both these states on business and leisure, and in my opinion, they are nowhere near the top of where I would like to have a business. Nor would I want to live there. I am seriously considering never even visiting there.

Fact is I have been to almost every state in the lower 48. The few exceptions are states where there is little manufacturing presence. In all my travels, I have never been somewhere that appeared to be better to live and work than my point of origin, Minnesota.

Amazingly, Minnesota is at the bottom of the list in 41st. Three places below Mississippi and fifteen places below Louisiana?


These CEOs have really tainted my picture of what CEOs are all about. They look to subscribe to the first definition above, rather than the latter. A CEO’s focus cannot be just about profits! You cannot have a manufacturing business without individuals, and how could you want to do business in a state which is oppressive to so many groups of individuals.

Minnesota has a strong foundation of workforce and talent, innovation and technology, infrastructure and quality of life that fuel our businesses success and growth. (Let me reiterate, workforce, talent, quality of life). That’s why so many global giants grow here. Minnesota is home to 18 renowned Fortune 500s, including 3M, General Mills, U.S. Bancorp, Target and Best Buy. Our Twin Cities ranks 1st per capita – and Minnesota ranks 4th – in Fortune 500 concentration.

Minnesota is home to the 7th most diverse economy among all 384 metropolitan areas in the U.S. (Minneapolis/St. Paul). Minnesota is better at growing new businesses than any other state in the nation: data shows that if you start a business here, it’s more likely to survive beyond five years than anywhere else in the country.

Business is about people, on both sides of the business equation. You cannot be a best place to do business unless you are a best place for all people.

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