I’m reading all this leading-edge news on LinkedIn, the WSJ, Bloomberg, CNBC, Forbes, you name it. All the experts seem strangely gleeful as they talk down the economy, stating with certitude that we’re headed full steam into a downturn. They don’t know exactly when but they’re almost sure it will be 2019.
Don’t follow the leaders down!
This is how I’m seeing things play out in business news as the year 2018 ends. I hope I’m wrong, but this stuff is predictable and I’ve closely studied economic cycles for more than 30 years. Negative chatter is contagious and creates “headwinds” against continued good economic times. But you can set your sails to tack against headwind and make a lot of forward progress.
I’m sorry to say this, but there are no executives of large American corporations who strike me as inspiring moral and ethical leaders. I cannot think of a single one. But there are numerous small business, independent enterprise and nonprofit leaders to whom I aspire and whose example I would like to follow, some I know personally. They are people bent on serving instead of controlling. These are people who stick with principles no matter what, and I’m talking about moral, ethical and economic principles. They enjoy enduring success.
The small business community needs to coalesce around the idea that the prevailing thoughts and decisions made by the leaders of large corporations and government (silent partners) often go against a stronger economy and the good of our country and society.
Do they still teach real economics?
If you subsidize something, you will enlarge it or encourage more of it. If you tax something, you will diminish it. This is a macroeconomics principle – an immutable law of economics.
If you serve your customer with value, you improve his position and therefore build more demand for your products. If you create more work or complexity for your customer and charge him for it in the process, you will damage him and lose his business. He will tell others about the bad experience as well. This is simple microeconomics which follows the macroeconomics principle.
Be solution oriented!
Why not put these immutable economic laws to work for our own businesses and multiply our numbers by example?
Any strong network of small business and enterprise leaders can work together in the markets and within their own companies to more effectively beat back negative economic forces, including politics and negative chatter aligned against them.
Put your best networking, service, sales and marketing game on, starting now!
Growth in 2019, 2020 and beyond is not only possible but probable if business leaders will get in the trenches with their people and demonstrate how much they care about the future. Leaders in great small businesses always do some heavy lifting with their teams to shore up conditions in the company and better serve customers. The also stay committed to their brand identities and work to build their reputations.
Business Growth Tactics for the New Year
In 2019, a strong leader will:
- Work closely with their salespeople and give them real leads instead of simply demanding more calls.
- Spend considerable time on production floors and job sites performing needed tasks and adding production value as well as developing employee relationships.
- Spend a lot of time with customers, learning what they really need, carefully considering how they or someone in their network can meet those needs.
- Be a committed brand manager, constantly nurturing the brand in the market by continually directing and helping to manage strong marketing campaigns.
If a bad recession in the overall economy does happen, your market share and brand awareness will determine how well you ride it out or even grow right through it.
Top-of-mind brand awareness is priceless. Those who have it usually earn it, and they remain in the market like flashing beacons as their competitors fade from the promotional stage.
I’m going to increase my marketing budget now and step on the gas even more during 2019. I also pledge to follow the sales, production and customer service advice listed above.
Are you with me?