• February 1, 2009
  • By Marshall Lager, founder and managing principal, Third Idea Consulting; contributor, CRM magazine

The Depression? Great.

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Memo from the desk of Marshall Lager, February’s Chief Recession-Proofing Officer:

In case you haven't read a newspaper or spoken to another human being in the past year or so: We're in a major recession. Some folks have even whispered the D-word—depression (not defenestration, though I sometimes worry it will be raining stockbrokers on Wall Street ere long).

It's important to remain focused on growth, rather than on short-term tactics and throat-slashing price cuts, but not everybody is listening. Sadly, this means the recession will be with us for a while—and CRM folks may find themselves ignored as executives do the wrong thing. (Being able to say "I told ya so" will be cold comfort if your company goes under.)

Should the worst happen, here's a bit of wisdom I got from a Dilbert cartoon (I have to mention Scott Adams at least once a year): You can make an excellent sign from some cardboard and a marker. Use it to beg for a new job, or protest the raw deal you got. ("Bring Back the WPA" has a nice ring to it.)

I'll leave you with something close to optimism: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Roosevelt was right when he said it, and he'd be right now. Panic kills economies. While money is tight, try to do whatever made you successful before the market tanked, and you'll probably be okay—unless, of course, you were a subprime lender.

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Until the downsizing, contact Senior Editor Marshall Lager at mlager@destinationCRM.com.

Every month, CRM magazine covers the customer relationship management industry and beyond. To subscribe, please visit http://www.destinationcrm.com/subscribe/.

Here's a quick link to more of this month's special coverage — The Recession Issue.

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