Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/26/10

Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo®’s mission is to help readers to thrive.

April 26, 2010—Issue #32

This week’s focus point: Housing and car sales are up, unemployment is edging down, the market is up, government bail-out loans are being paid back early with interest. The recovery is here and getting stronger. Are things perfect? No. Are they improving? Yes. Interact and associate with those people who are positive and optimistic and who are comfortable with an abundance mentality. Stay away from those who would have you believe that we’re all victims. The next year can make or break your business based on YOUR decisions, not those of others.

Monday Morning Perspective: He played the king as though under momentary apprehension that someone else was about to play the ace. — Eugene Field on a performance of King Lear

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16 thoughts on “Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/26/10

  1. Good reminders, Alan, as always.

    I wake up every morning full of optimism and thankful I have a healthy body and mind, clients, classes to teach, speaking events, a new book, and a wife and 3 kids that love me. I just think using the recovery word at this point is premature and is not supported by the economic data and trends.

    I do sometimes find it tough to balance optimism with reality. Granted, no economy is perfect, yet there are still serious concerns: exploding government debt (4 to 12% of GDP in just the past year, alone); job stagnation; growing EU international debt expansion; and pending inflation once the government releases the artificial plug in the money supply dike, to name just a few. Bottom line: without sustained, long-term job growth we cannot have recovery.

    We have lost over 8 million jobs since this recession started, so minor upticks have little significance at this point. Also, the unemployment numbers reported don’t include real unemployment-those who work part-time or have given up looking.

    We can’t control the economy but we can control how we respond to the downside. I see a bright future, yet it will take longer than anticipated for the sun to shine through the long-term fog.

  2. This is a world of earthquakes, uncertainly, volcanoes, economic fluctuations, and so on. You’re focusing on the negatives and you sound scared. You can’t do anything about EU international debt. Focus on being productive, helping yourself, and helping others. We’ve lost 8 million jobs and 90% of everyone are still employed. If you give up looking, that’s really not my problem.

    Your response to the downside is a lot of baggage you can’t do anything with but sink under the weight. You seem to wake up full of optimism and to to sleep full of dread. You’re defining reality far too harshly.

  3. Good feedback.

    I am not scared and sleep well every night.

    Perhaps we sometimes use the word, “recovery” too quickly? Is it the “cry wolf recovery” syndrome?

    Off to a fantastic Saturday in sunny California! Thanks for taking the time to respond.

  4. “Cognitive dissonance”–I have no regrets! In my principles of marketing class, I apply CD more to a consumer’s response to a product or service rather than the economy, but I am sure it fits there, too.

    My intent is not to scare anyone. Facing the facts rather than fear works better. Perhaps a positive approach to reality is the balance?

  5. A positive approach, not doom and gloom. I’m weary of the guys telling us every day for 20 years that things will collapse and finally one day shout, “I was right!” What a waste of a life.

  6. The new jobs are up, and unemployment is up, which is positive, because people who had given up looking (and were no longer counted) have re-entered the job market. The stock market, after the technical error, wound up 300 points lower, still above 10,000, with a small European country imploding. The problem in Greece is that those protestors are government employees unhappy with their perks diminishing. You can’t retire at 53, cheat on your taxes, and demand that the government do nothing.

    Greece has a lower GNP than Dallas, Texas. This, too, shall pass.

  7. Greece exhibits the same, systemic symptoms that exist in Spain, Portugal, Ireland, and the UK. It’s the same “Nanny State,” entitlement approaches that are taking a gradual hold in my home state of CA, and the U.S.

    I still think it goes beyond just Athens and Dallas. Cowboys and philosophers are telling us something. Plato would not be happy with his Republic. Perhaps the philosopher kings may be taking things too far.

    The fundamental issues may be deeper than a mere technical error. The market was shifting days prior to the “typo.” I hope it was that simple, but my mind and instinct tells me otherwise.

    I plan to stay positive, think long-term, and move forward with value for my clients, no matter what the market brings our way.

  8. I don’t understand your second paragraph, but I only have three advanced degrees.

    As for your fears, did you think the market would be where it is today a year ago? No. You were predicting more gloom. You’re failing to appreciate the great resiliency in a market that can withstand all that’s happening.

  9. The second paragraph ties into your Dallas comment, then fits Plato’s Republic and his Philosopher King into our theme.

    I have two advanced degrees, blending theology, philosophy, history, and communications into business, with a technology blend, too. Sorry if I was confusing.

    Yes, indeed, the market is resilient. Point well taken!

  10. Actually, I think Stuart makes a good point. We all interpret what we see. If there is a risk (such as individual states like California) tanking, it affects investment decisions and other decisions.

    This does not mean one loses optimism; it means that you may choose something else that has less risk to take you and others forward.

  11. Agreed, Ian. But perception is reality, and perceptions are very vulnerable to prevailing “reporting” and rumor, and those are not always based in empirical reality. One needs perspective and independent validation.

  12. Great point, Alan, especially when much of the reporting fits into the “false positive” category.

    Much of the current economic “reporting” seems to ignore empirical, economic reality. Optimism is foundational; reality not optional.

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