At a business networking function on Tuesday evening, the guest speaker spoke about a recession and us needing to open our eyes to it. I didn’t see the purpose in that.

I spoke to quite a few people at the dinner who are not feeling pessimistic. They don’t deny that globally a big shake up is taking place. They just don’t feel it is “the end of the world”. In fact one or two said “This is Africa’s time.”

We are not in a recession. Maybe we will still go into one, maybe we won’t. What do we achieve by focusing on the possibility? How does it make us feel any better or prevent it or get us out of it?

The speaker suggested that we shouldn’t be spending money on extravagant luxuries. I agree with that, if the spending means using credit and increasing your debt. As individuals the lesson we can take out of the current circumstances is that debt is a trap. Take small but continual steps to get yourself out of any debt you may already have and don’t create any additional debt without careful consideration.

It seems to me as a lay person that everything in international finance and economics is cyclical. And those cycles benefit some and hinder others. When interest rates are high those with bonds and loans cringe, but pensioners with investments rejoice. Then they come down and the response swings over. When dollars are expensive in rands the importers cry, whilst the exporters rejoice. Despite all the doom and gloom stories there are astute businessmen preparing to make a lot of money right now.

I suggest we each need to find where we can make present circumstances work for us. As an example my work with staff and managers, when embraced, results in increased efficiency and productivity. In tight economic times smart companies realize they can no longer afford to be wasteful with their human resource. They need to be more productive in order to be profitable. I need to capitalize on that. What can you capitalize on?


  1. Michael Lusk

    Hi Alison
    In this day and age having a reliable computer expert around is all but essential.

    There are lots of experts around even if they have to say so themselves.

    The man I use works like this:

    If I phone him with a problem and he can tell me what to do over the phone he does. Otherwise he asks me to bring the computer in and he fixes it there and then. He always quotes before hand so I know exactly where I stand.

    Over the years he has solved 95% of my problems over the phone.

    I feel so guilty I offer to pay him for his telephonic help. He laughs but refuses

    You godda know I recommend him to everybody who needs help. He so busy he rarely visits his customers – they all have to visit him

    4 July 2009 at 08:07

  2. Michael Lusk

    I see that this original post was written in February and you are right at that time there wasn’t a recession. But there is one now.

    It was Brian Carter of INNER Circle Fairlands fame who brought my attention to the term ‘recession’ It is a technical term used to describe the state of the economy and where it stands in the cycle.

    Reading the economy is not easy for anybody but I dare say if you observe the seasons one can get a pretty good idea of how one should be preparing for the next phase in the cycle.

    Although we are still in the middle of winter and where I live it is seriously cold – the fact of the matter is that spring is coming at us. We have passed the winter solstice and technically the days are getting longer and in truth warmer.

    So what should we be doing right now? Well if you are a gardner you will be trimming, prunning and planting bulbs and seed and generally preparing for spring.

    The business upturn is also on its way. If you are a business person you could expand your circle of influence by attending business network meetings, trim your expenses, prune unprofitable areas of your business and plant ideas that will take root and grow.

    \there is always something to do – whatever the seasson.

    4 July 2009 at 08:26


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