As 2022 catapulted into 2023, there was a lot of talk about a recession on the horizon. High inflation rates. Climbing interest rates. Many pundits waxed on, and on that a recession was imminent.
Because of that fear, I encountered many businesses that began to be more conservative about how they moved forward. Do we hire, or should we wait? Do we make that big capital investment project? What should we do?
Rapid decision-making processes grounded to a crawl. What happened next?
Tech companies laid off thousands of employees. Pundits began to scream again about a recession. But non-tech and less-tech companies stayed strong. With the exception of tech companies, many businesses still have a hard time hiring people.
Then some banks failed. Surely this was the tipping point into recession.
At the time of this writing, the effects of bank failures are still very localized. People are cautious. But a wider negative impact has been limited.
This is going to continue to be the trend. There will be headline-grabbing signs that a recession is on the rise. Then the headlines will be quiet until the next event captures our attention.
I’m neither bold enough nor smart enough to predict whether a true recession will happen or whether we will see steady economic recovery and growth.
What I do know is that money is best made during these times. When people are cautious, when stock prices are down, and when business leaders play it safe, that’s when a bold leader makes a decision that pays dividends.
During the 2008 economic crisis and the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic, entrepreneurs started more businesses than in steady economic times.
Why? During downturns, people become disenchanted with business as usual because they aren’t being paid what they are worth or they lost their job.
It’s in times of crisis that people get creative and find new and innovative ways to make money.
So they start their own business. They discover the freedom that comes with making their own schedule and earning money doing something they love. And they never go back. Once they have the bug for entrepreneurship, it’s hard to shake.
Are we on the path to recession or recovery? Who knows? But if you were thinking about striking out on your own and starting a small business, now is absolutely the time.