Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Get Busy Living or Get Busy Dying

In the Shawshank Redemption, it is Andy Dufresne, a man wrongly convicted, a victim of circumstances out of his control and played so poignantly by Tim Robbins, who first utters the line “Get busy living or get busy dying”. And he’s right; it really does come down to a simple choice.

Today’s world brings us constant challenges. For those of us in business, never has it been more challenging to grow our businesses, in a climate where consumer trust has all but disappeared and every day the media perpetuates and propagates the doom and gloom. For many business owners the answer is to wait, to ride things out until those ‘green shoots’ really do appear. But in truth now is the time to get busy living. Now is the time to take action, to market your proposition, to build confidence in your clients. Now is the time to get your business ready for the recovery.

Holding back on your marketing and business growth plans may seem like the sensible option right now, playing it safe and cutting your costs to ride out the recession, quietly. But while you are busily biding your time, those who are prepared to take advantage of the economic climate right now will ultimately prosper. Those who nurture their clients, those who proactively build and develop their client marketing strategy, those who focus on client relationships and service will come out way ahead of those who sit back and wait.
There are companies out there who are thriving during this recession, and why? Because their focus is on growth, expansion, new ventures; they are taking advantage of the current economic climate. Take Tesco as an example; although their sales may have slowed, they continue to thrive. Tesco is set to expand its personal finance arm, seeing an opportunity to compete with the big banks whose reputations have taken such a hit in the last few years. Tesco are actively expanding into what some would consider one of the most difficult markets to be in, they are seizing the opportunity to build on their brand and take new ventures to market. While the banks are busy dying, Tesco is very much living…and thriving.

The recovery will bring investment and consumers will look for financial advice more than ever before. The economic downturn has shown us that simply saving in a bank deposit account isn’t enough; the constant media stories about how the economy has effected every part of society has educated consumers, has given them a better understanding of the financial framework of the UK. The post-recession consumer will be much more financially savvy. They will need and will demand advice. They will turn to those firms who serviced them proactively during difficult times, those firms who they trust, those firms who focused on building their brand and shaping their proposition.
The recovery is on its way, and whenever it comes you need to be ready. Don’t delay, take hold of your entrepreneurial spirit and get busy living.


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