Afraid of the Recession? 5 Tips to Succeed

Geoff Livingston
6 min readJan 15, 2023
Almost every financial pundit says a recession looms in front of us. Philadelphia, photo by the author.

Are you afraid of the recession impacting you or your company? Economic headwinds impact many of us, from creating more difficult revenue generation scenarios to budget cuts and sometimes departures. Having survived several recessions in my career including one as a business owner, I see recessions as opportunities to adapt new approaches and strengthen business practices.

In short, recessions can create pivots that drive success.

No individual or company can single-handedly prevent a recession. However, there is still business to be done. The world does not end.

While subject to economic conditions, whether direct or tangential, how one approaches a recession is completely within an individual’s control. Consider these five tips to inspire your personal approach to facing economic headwinds.

1) Optimize Value

Determine your most valuable work, and double down on it. Philadelphia 30th Street Station by the author.

While a steady hand helps, one approach I don’t recommend is carrying on as if nothing has changed. This incurs risk, in my opinion. Recessions catalyze change as businesses adapt to survive and grow. Companies look to double down on value creation via their existing business opportunities, projects, and team members. Competitors definitely evolve.

Going about business as usual may cause you to fall behind in such an environment. Instead, look to improve and create more value. Optimize activities based on value to the company and/or your team.

When you consider building strategies or recommending or selecting projects to work on, use the value barometer to make determinations. Do the hard work. Look at the analytics involved. Will the opportunity make money, save time, or generate new leads? Or are the outcomes soft, making the value hard to determine? Choose opportunities that have the most obvious return on investment.

One tip for those looking to optimize their personal time: Keep time sheets. This is not for your boss, but so you can invest your hours creating impact and eliminate activities that are just time devils (hello, email!). A business that fails to take inventory usually fails…