Worsening economy and possible double-dip recession will be self imposed not just economically driven. Clearly the economy continues to be soft at best, validated by record low home sales, but the reality is individuals and companies are just not making the necessary adjustments to make the most of every opportunity that exist.
Tax incentives disappear for first time home buyers and housing sales slump. Real estate agents and brokers complain about inventory levels, sellers that are not realistic, banks that won't lend and buyers that are bottom feeders. While all of that may be true it won't increase production. When is the last time a real estate agent called you to talk about listing your house? Doesn't happen. What happens cause the agent to be at 'effect', waiting for something to happen to them rather than making something happen because of something they did. Entire real estate industry is waiting for the the government to continue incentives, the banks to free up lending, the seller to call the broker or the buyer to raise their offer. Nothing comes to those that wait except pain!
And its not just the real estate business-- same issue for autos, furniture, electronics, service industries --you name it and businesses that are still suffering have not yet made the necessary adjustments to survive and prosper in this environment. You can not wait on conditions to change you must change! You can't wait for your clients to get reasonable or to come to see you or to finally make a decision or to be rational or anything. This is the kind of economy where you have to go to your client base and create transactions. This is a time where you must become completely unreasonable with how to get things done and never wait or make excuses.
I was recently trying to make a purchase of a luxury product for my wife who is having a birthday this weekend. I have been mishandled by two companies that sell the very product that I want to buy for her. One is located 3 blocks from me and the other 12 blocks from me. Both were nice but neither did what was necessary to get in front of me and truly service me to a 'done-deal'. I then found myself on the internet searching information and asking for input on Facebook when a sales person with a company 80 miles from where I live discovers I am in the market and offers to bring me what I want. This is what it takes today. Responsibility to change your conditions and do what ever is necessary.
The government can not bail out individuals. Your manufacturer can only make the product so good, so cheap and only offer incentives for so long. Today it takes an attitude of advance and conquer not retreat and wait for things to change. You must be first in the consumers mind today or you will end up last. And when you get there do everything right.
While the violent shift in the economy 18 months ago cause many business those the failures that continue from here on out will be mostly self imposed. Anyone that use yesterday's think and/or approaches will continue to suffer long after this economy recovers. The only way to ensure you don't experience a self imposed double dip is;
1) decide to expand into the market and take market share
2) do anything and everything that your competitors will not do
3) keep every individual focused on the solution not the problem!