There is some very helpful information in my book Sell to Survive on how to advance and conquer market share in any economy. Everyone is limited to four responses during a contractions and should be aware of what they are:
1) The Cheerleader response: "I refuse to participate!"
2) The Old school response: "Nothing really has changed it's back to the basics."
3) The Quitter response: "There is nothing I can do, I just have to wait it out."
4) The Adapt and Act response: "Things are different, accommodate change with action."
Let's take each on of these. While I am consider myself an optimistic person and believe my mental condition is critical to my success it would be irresponsible and unworkable to suggest to others that you can make the economy different just by saying, "I refuse to participate". It is hard to refuse that credit has tightened, companies and individuals are spending less, and people are losing their jobs.
I agree with the overall context of the second response, "Return to the basics", and absolutely agree that the basics are vital to success, but you can't depend on block and tackle if you're three touchdowns behind and with only three minutes left in the fourth quarter. You can't advance the ball down the field from the huddle you have to go into action! Most the people that work for you or with you have never operated in this type of environment so to suggest to them to get back to basics is nebulous as basic for them will prove completely unworkable their reference point will be to a time of expansion. That would be the wrong basic.
The quitter's response -- I will be nice here and just say, that if you try to wait this one out you will be without money, a job, a home and a future. The average recession has a duration of 18 months and most people don't have those types of cash reserves. Those that have the cash reserves would never have this response and be without work because they refuse to go through their cash.
Now the last school of thought is the one I want to promote to you as the way to not just survive but advance and conquer and seize market-share. Acknowledge that the market is different, it has changed, and it will be more difficult and challenging to sell your products and services, (not impossible). It will require a completely different set of actions, energy, work ethic and think. While these times can be very difficult, economic contractions can also prove to be an opportunity to gain new clients, boost sales, differentiate yourself in the marketplace and take market share. Now is the time to learn new skills and then master and execute with massive action. You will be rewarded, you will advance and conquer market share while others surrender it.
Grant Cardone, Author of Sell to Survive
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