By Dean Whittaker

Challenging, unprecedented, and rapidly changing are all terms we have heard to describe our current economic environment. We are all hearing the stories of companies whose sales have dropped by 30-40% within a few months. Banks are canceling their financial commitments, leaving customers without the needed capital to finance their inventory or balance their cash flow. How do we survive and even prosper in times like these? Here are ten ideas to consider in response to this situation:

  1. Adapt quickly to the changing environment :conserve cash, work with suppliers, customers, and co-workers to develop a plan of action.
  2. Communicate :with customers, suppliers, vendors and your bank. Keep them informed so they can plan accordingly.
  3. Collaborate :share what we have and know. We are all in this together. By sharing surplus office space, under-utilized equipment, surplus staff time, knowledge and skills, we all will benefit.
  4. Create :innovation is one of the benefits that comes from our current situation. Look for new ways to do things, reduce costs, improve efficiencies, and add more value.
  5. Trust :have confidence in yourself and others that we will work through the situation. Decide to offer the trust you seek.
  6. Give :focus on giving, being of service to others, sharing your skills and expertise.
  7. Support :provide support to those in need. All of us know of someone who is seeking employment. Help them network. Look for opportunities for them to engage their skills.
  8. Share :look for ways to share what you have. We live in a world of abundance.
  9. Participate :in an open-source project.
  10. Love each other :give what you want to get.

While these are simple concepts, they represent a positive way to take charge of the situation. We can weather this storm. Reach out and give of yourself.