Based on news reports on TV and in the paper, you’d think we were already in a recession. The reality is, we’re not. You can’t be in a recession when the economy is growing,” Institute for Trend Research economist Alan Beaulieu told attendees at this week’s National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors annual meeting in Washington D.C.
He expects the economy to grow at a “tepid pace” in 2008, but that it will indeed grow. The housing slump and credit turmoil have not yet been enough to tip the economy backwards, he says.
As Beaulieu has told many an association meeting, he believes recession is coming -but not until 2009 and 2010. So, instead of reacting to reports that a recession is upon us, he suggests getting proactive and preparing. Think back to the last recession. Go to the one or two years before that recession began, and ask yourself: What would you have done differently had you known what was coming? Working harder won’t do it; you must work smarter, Beaulieu said.
- Research industries that are acyclical to economic pressures.
- Analyze your balance sheet and watch your cash flow. Carefully consider capital expenditures.
- Be slow to hire.
- Develop a layoff plan.
- And decide: What is your next bold initiative?
And lastly, remember that it is possible to be profitable even when revenues slump.