If you have followed the news media coverage of the economy over the past two years or so, there is a basic idea that you may have come away with: Economic growth-good. Recession-bad.
It has become socially acceptable to place the word “recession” in a group of other 4-letter words our mothers taught us not to say.
Now, I am not an economist, I only play one on TV. But I believe, in the long run, this recession is going to be good for our economy and our country. Don’t get me wrong, there is a great deal of pain that has been and will be experienced by many people during this recession. Lost jobs, lost income, lost homes, etc.
I would like to offer up a different perspective. Amidst all that pain are a lot of positive things. I read somewhere once that “Positive change comes only from negative times.” I think there is a lot of truth in that statement that can be applied to this recession.
This recession has forced all of us as business owners to rethink, reevaluate, reexamine and reconfigure our businesses. Business leaders all across the country are spending a lot of resources on this process. Asking the questions about what they have to do to make their businesses better and therefore survive this turbulent economy.
And in doing so, businesses will become stronger and things will get better for those employees.
Spawned new businesses
In 2001, I was laid-off from my corporate job. Best thing to ever happen to me. Now I have a strong, viable company that employs 8 people with good jobs and contributes to the better good.
Think of all the people that have lost their job in this economy. Many are going to do the same thing I did. Some will succeed and many will fail. But many of these people would not have got an opportunity to start a new company without being laid-off first.
Countless new businesses are being launched every day. God bless America!
Building a better mousetrap
It has been well chronicled that a great deal of new innovation in our history has sprung from small start-ups. Those small start-ups are being created right now by many people who have lost jobs in this economy. Will this create new jobs right now? No. But chances are very good the next “big thing” will be brought to market by one of these new companies.
Thinned the heard
The companies that are surviving this recession will be stronger in the long run. The companies that did not survive this downturn were in trouble already. The handwriting was on the wall. This recession exposed and accelerated their inevitable demise (i.e. Circuit City, Wickes Furniture, Movie Gallery, etc).
Again, even some good companies succumb to the downturn and had to close. But I would bet in most cases those owners and entrepreneurs are working on starting new ventures.
Thieves and Crooks Get Exposed
This recession has exposed a number of crooks and bad people who were using the strong economy to steal billions of dollars. Nationally, and the biggest crook of all, was Bernie Madof.
But here in the Twin Cities we have had a number of people who have now been exposed because they could not sustain their criminal activities in a recession, Tom Petters, Denny Hecker and Trevor Cook just to name a few. It seems like every few weeks we are ready about another one getting caught.
Just to be clear, there has been a lot of pain experienced by a lot of people the past couple of years. I understand the negative news. I don’t want to see people lose their jobs, their homes, etc. That is never a good thing. But some good usually comes from some bad. And I really believe that is the case with this recession.
Our economy is cyclical. Downturns and recessions are going to happen. And not everything about them is bad.