Accelerating Out of the Great Recession: How to Win In A Slow Growth Economy
by David Rhodes and Daniel Stelter of the Boston Consulting Group BCG
Hardcover224 pages (January, 2010) McGraw-Hill
Reviewed by Will Phillips
Boston Consulting Group is one of the oldest and well established consulting firms built on the knowledge of many Harvard and MIT Business Schools professors. Their basic contention is that this recession is not like others in our memory. This is a well researched book based on a number of surveys among corporate level executives in large companies with set revenue of $100 billion. It may well be outlining the most relevant strategic information that will impact your business and your life in the next five to 10 to 15 years.
This book researched three periods, the Great Depression in the US, Stagflation in the 70ís and the Japanese Lost Decade.
They predict a period of prolonged slower growth which is of great significance to you as a business leader because:
And easy access to capital will not be readily available to help you. The banking sector will take years to recover. US banks are basically bankrupt. And the banks rather than realizing their losses have chosen to hold onto their assets in hopes that the economy and the housing market will improve. In doing so they have attained zombie status, appear to be solvent but only because they have not acknowledged the deterioration and the true value of their assets. Zombie banks do not make loans.
- It increases the competitive intensity of business dramatically.
- It prompts government to become more activist in terms of protectionism, employment and finance.
- It forces a change in the nature of consumption. In the United States and Western Europe people will save more in the face of greater job insecurity and reduced retirement provisions.
- It triggers a process of deleveraging by reducing huge and unsustainable levels of debt.
- It sparks acceleration and industry restructuring where weak business models and excess capacity will be sorted out.
Now the book gets to the best part. What separates the winners and losers in a recession? How do they behave differently? There are many valuable insights here which apply to the club business.