By: Bill Murphy Jr.Source: Inc.

Sometimes you hear a strange statistic and it makes you stop and think. Like these, for example:

  • The human eye blinks roughly 21,600 times every day.
  • There are fewer pandas in the world than there are Panda Express restaurants.
  • If you were to spell out the numbers zero to 999,999,999 in English, you’d never use the letter B.

Recently, however, I learned a new statistic. It’s the idea that 1 in 8 Americans have worked at a McDonald’s at at some point in their lives.

You might have seen McDonald’s touting this number recently, and it seems to check out. Quick math:

  • Imagine 13,500 U.S. McDonald’s restaurants, each with an average of 50 workers.
  • Assume each employee works an average of 6 months; that works out to 1.3 million new McDonald’s employees each year.
  • If the average person’s work career lasts 32 years (some much longer, some shorter, but it’s an average), that works out to roughly 42 million current and McDonald’s employees.

Sure enough, that’s almost exactly one-eighth of the U.S. population of 330 million. Also, McDonald’s says it has done a representative survey that backs up the number.