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?