How to Survive and Thrive in a Recessed Economy

Feb 16, 2009, Written by Sue Miley

In a difficult economy everything seems so BLACK and WHITE – as small business owners we either survive or don’t. In my experience at Community Coffee, Foodies Kitchen and working with many clients, there is a lot of GREY between thriving in a booming market place and dying in a recessed economy. To survive and thrive in a recessed economy we cannot sit back and ignore the inefficiencies in our operation.We need to proactively identify opportunities to:

  • Reduce expenses.
  • Eliminate redundant, inefficient processes.
  • Automate processes or create systems where we are NOT constantly recreating the wheel.
  • Focus our time and resources on the highest value activities.
  • Market in new ways that directly touch your ideal clients/customers.
  • Eliminate products, business lines, or divisions that are not profitable or strategic.

In 2009, let’s attack the low lying fruit immediately and purposefully achieve efficiencies and enhanced effectiveness in the entire operation.

A couple of quick suggestions:

  1. When is the last time you had your internet and phone provider look at your plan and quote you the optimal service for your business?  Have you checked with competitors?
  2. What does your organization look like?  Is every person in your organization qualified, motivated, hard-working and willing to learn?  We can’t afford to hire two people to get one job done these days and if we only have one person doing a job, they need to make sure the job gets done right.
  3. What is your base business?  Is it as efficient as possible?  Is it a strong foundation of operational efficiency and profitability to support new projects, diversification, etc?  If not, refocus your efforts on your base business and create that profitable foundation.  This strategy should provide the most opportunity for efficiency and effectivenss this year.

For more ideas, and help if you need it, check out our new Streamlining Your Business programs at

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Sue Miley

Sue Miley MBA, MA, LPC helps small business owners build successful businesses on a foundation of Christian values. After 20 years in business, and 10 years as a Christian counselor, Sue uses a combination of faith, business and psychology to help clients in business and in life.