Category Archives: The Economy


I love percentages. Give me a financial statement without them and I get pissy. Your ebitda is $1 million. Not good enough! What percent is that of your sales???? >

Recession ready?

The economists are beginning to say it out loud: the signs are gathering for a recession by the end of 2019. Yes, it depends on the sector, but it is likely you are not immune. Are you recession ready? >

Raising prices?

This week the federal reserve raised interest rates again making them the highest they have been since 2008. The President just directed the US trade representative to level tariffs on about $50 billion worth of Chinese imports; this is in addition to the steel and aluminum tariffs recently imposed.  If you use steel in manufacturing, the prices have already gone up.

Are you raising prices, too? >

Are high rents driving your best employees away?

What had been a growing problem of rent increases of 10-15% each year has resulted in a crisis in the LA area. You say you knew that. You hear anecdotally of families doubling up, and kids moving back in with parents, People are moving further and further away. Rent may be taking upwards of 50% of pay checks.

And if you rent, guess what?

Landlords are hoping their tenants move out so they can raise the rents another 25%. And, there are a line of potential tenants ready to pay that new rent.

Millennials say they never plan to own a house. Is that because they grew up during the Great Recession, saw many families lose their homes and heard their parents complain about the cost of housing?

if no one is going to own, they will be more willing to move for another opportunity. If no one owns, they will not be as committed to the community. It tears at our social structure.

Take a few minutes this week to explore how this is affecting your organization. You don’t have to rescue anyone, you need to be aware of the situation, and how it may be affecting your team. Be creative.









Illustration courtesy of Economy Watch – Follow The Money

Wage increases are coming, are you ready?

Conversations about increases in the minimum wage are in the past tense – at least in California.

“How is the increase affecting you?”

“Have you had to bump up workers who were a dollar above the minimum by 50c or a dollar?”

“Can you get anyone to work at minimum wage?”

“Can you get any qualified applicants at any rate?”

From every sector of the economy, I’m hearing of long term employees taking jobs at other firms that offer them more pay, or a new opportunity or it is closer to home.

Don’t think this is just lower wage employees. I’ve heard of high level operations managers, partners at law firms, senior sales executives, insurance brokers with a good book of business, and of course mid-level managers who might have looked since 2008, but were not tempted in the uncertain economy. Most of these folks were not looking. The offer came out of the blue. Your company story must be more compelling than that siren song from the land of green green grass on the other side of the fence.

This affects you in 3 ways:

  1.      You might be able to pick up some talent that wouldn’t have considered a change before;

2,       You might lose good employees who aren’t looking that get solicited out of      the blue;

  1.      You may have to raise the pay in certain positions pro-actively to retain your very best people.

Most people wait until a really good employee leaves to get a jump on this. Don’t be that employer. Start addressing the issue this week. By next week, you might be chasing a good employee as they walk out your front door.


picture courtesy of