As a country we have gone through an amazing amount of crisis in our relatively short history. We have survived and thrived after two World Wars, four presidential assassinations, our own Civil War, pandemics and more. However, this is the first time we had a government mandated shutdown of our economy. We will survive this as well.
Almost every sector of our economic engine is beginning to churn again. Businesses are opening at different capacity levels to maintain recommended safety standards. Restaurants will not open to full capacity yet. Today I read that local gyms have been given the green light to reopen but they will have restrictions on the number of people in the facility. The church we attend has reopened and is following the guidelines set forth by the county which is a little more than ten percent capacity.
There are changes taking place due to the extent of damage caused to the economy. My heart aches for the many people and businesses who are suffering. Many of our small businesses will not survive and that should sadden all of us. There are changes coming to large businesses as well. Starbucks announced they will be closing four-hundred stores in North America. AT&T will be making large employment cuts. Some of the country’s biggest hotels expect the permanent closure of thousands of rooms. These are just a few of the headlines recently and still I am optimistic. Let me repeat that still I am optimistic.
Positive changes are also coming. Many businesses have figured out that employees can be trusted to work remotely. This will save people time and money from long commutes while also allowing them to spend more quality time with family. The latter point much needed in my opinion. It will reduce business expenses. This will allow businesses to invest cash in other areas such as research and development, logistics, and new markets. Business closures are occurring and while this will cause some short-term pain it is not necessarily a bad thing in the long term.
Creative destruction is an economic term used to describe what happens to an industry or product when a more competitive and efficient replacement becomes available. You know when someone builds a better widget. We have seen the horse and buggy, pagers, and even Magnum PI’s mobile phone go by the wayside. That last reference gives my age demographic away and no I did not mean the horse and buggy. In the current case we did not ask for this, it was thrust upon us. So, it is time for us to do something about it.
Small business owners, leaders and managers alike must determine how we adjust not to survive but how do we improve, grow, and thrive. Heraclitus stated, ‘Change is the only constant’. That was true 2600 years ago and it is true today. We are Americans and we are resilient, tenacious, and innovative. In the words of Tom Beaman ‘Let’s roll’.
Registered Representative offering securities and advisory services through Independent Financial Group, LLC (IFG), a registered broker-dealer and investment advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Dedicated Financial & Insurance Services and IFG are unaffiliated entities