09/06/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Survive Recession

USA Today states that two-thirds of the 52 economists polled said the U.S. economy is in recession. Add those who believe the economy will be in recession soon, and 79% believe that the economy will contract at some point in 2008.

I recently signed books to a packed house and was asked what to do about the current economic contraction. I told the audience that while business schools tell you that one of the top reasons for business failure is under capitalization, I believe that the number one reason a business or for that fact an individual fails (regardless of the endeavor) is "the inability to sell products in quantities great enough, at prices high enough and at speeds fast enough to capitalize the business, the idea or whatever it is the company or individual's survival depends on."

Take any failure you have had in your lifetime or in business and you will see the individual or company was unable to sell its products in quantities great enough, fast enough and at prices high enough. While cash is necessary to fund any business it cannot be the determining factor! No matter how much cash the business or individual has, sooner or later you have to get your products and services funded by others through selling or you will burn through your cash.

Apple sits on 15 billion in cash because it sells its products in quantities great enough. GM burns through cash and extends its vulnerability due to its inability to get products out in quantities great enough thereby replenishing its cash needs.

Consider then that the top skills desired by employers today today are communication skills, work ethic, and personality. Why? 1) Business owners seek these types of skills due to the void of people having these abilities. 2) The business owner knows it has to get products and services out the door in order to replenish its cash needs and further expand! While the graduate looks for those jobs paying the most money, they should focus on those skills that are most needed and desired in the marketplace!

This need to sell and move products into the market becomes even more important in today's employment environment with the unemployment rates rising to 5.7% in July 2008. The ability to sell your company's products, services and ideas will guarantee you not just a job but your survival regardless of the economic scene. People that can sell become even more valuable in contracting economies. No matter how well you manage your business or how superior your product and services, if you can't sell them to the public you will not survive at anytime much less a recession.

If retail sales of products and services are key economic indicators of the economy itself, how important are they to the individual business and the individual household! Ask the average American how they feel about selling and you get this look of disdain yet they agree that selling is the only way to get what they want in life.

Selling is not an activity of the business but the life-blood of the business and the lifeblood of the economy as a whole. Selling is not something the business or individual has a choice to do, anymore than you have a choice to breathe or eat if you want to continue living.
It befuddles me that neither basic education levels, colleges or even advanced business schools today don't teach basic skills that are critical to the survival of the individual and that furthers the production of the company. Communication, negotiating, persuasion, and target attainment are not even taught in today's schools.

While the oil business is having no trouble selling product, a very successful, Houston Oil man, recently wrote me after reading my book, Selling the Secret to Success "No matter where you fall in the "food chain of life", you need to be able to sell yourself to others."

The only way to get through any economic contraction is to sell your way out!
John Kennedy, master orator and sales person knew it and sold America on landing man to the moon. Martin Luther King understood the need to sell with his Dream Speech. Obama's knows it the value of selling, watch his victory speech as he ignites his backers. John McCain needs to learn this survival skill or he won't close the gap by November!

This skill of selling is vital to even becoming President of the USA and I assure you it is the only thing that will ensure that your ideas, your dreams and your family's financial future survive a recession!

Posted by Grant Cardone, Author and CEO