Sunday, January 11, 2009

Small Businesses Hurting From Failing Economy

As my first Blog on my new Blog site, I've decided to go right to the heart of the problem for small businesses today - "blame it all on the recession." Every where you turn, that's all you hear, the recession is killing small business. Or "The customers just aren't coming in any more." In fact, the link from the Headline of this blog takes you to a Newsweek article that talks about all the woes of small businesses all around the country and how devastating it is to our economy.

Times are tough, there is no doubt about it. And based on the news media and all the politicians bold enough to speak on the subject, things are NOT getting better anytime soon. But the truth of the matter is this, you can blame your woes on outside circumstance and believe that you have no accountability in your current situation or you can look take control - figure out a solution and move forward.

That sounds crazy I know, but no matter how bad things get, people still need to eat. They need to buy gas, drive their cars, get them fixed, buy new clothes or maybe even take their family to see a movie. And someone has to provide all of those services - why can't it be you.

In any economy, businesses that can't adapt to the changing conditions will go out of business. Unfortunately, in today's world, we seem to believe that the Government should bail them out. But that doesn't fix the fact that they aren't running their business in the manner necessary to succeed in the new economic environment.

Everyday, men and women of all walks of life are spending their money. It may be less than it was 6 months ago, but the are still spending money. How are they spending it? Why are the spending it? And where are they spending it? These are all questions that every business owner needs to ask, if they wish to survive - not just in a bad economy, but in a thriving one as well. And once they find the answer, they need to find a way to get these potential customers to spend it in their store instead of where they currently are - not because your business provides the best product or the fastest service - but because your business provides the product and / or service that the customers want.

That is the essence of business - regardless of the economic conditions. And that is the essence to running a business that is "recession proof".


  1. Raw, yet invigorating. Adaptation is a necessity everywhere. The unwillingness to adapt and forsee the brighter successful future, will only end demise, but the question is...How do you help the small business owner not only picture that successful future, but actually believe in it?

  2. CJ

    Great question. There is no simple answer. Since most people live their entire life without ever experiencing what it means to truly commit to a goal or a vision, getting a small business owner to commit to what it takes to generate real success is a serious challenge.

    Most people, including small business owners, want success, but don't understand that success is a choice and requires doing whatever needs to be done. They don't understand that it takes more than just wanting it.

    In essence, I believe, to get a small business owner to actually believe that their future is possible requires a level of commitment by the coach that is beyond simple guidance - it requires that the coach play an active role as the leader developing the small business owners commitment until it is able to stand on its own.

    It requires that the coach commit to the success, because there will be times when the small business owner doesn't believe and is willing to give up - and only a leader with a shared vision of the future can keep / get them back on track.

    Hope that answers you question.


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