"You've been shoveling manure all day," said the farmer to the little
boy as he walked past the barn. "How come?"
"Because if I just keep shoveling," the boy replied, "I'm sure to find a
pony in here somewhere."
And that pretty much sums up the last 12 months: Lots of shoveling in
search of a pony.
Hammered, Bludgeoned, Whipsawed.
Like so many other recruiters, I took my hits as the economy dimmed.
Fewer jobs, slower decisions, tighter budgets.
But now, in the glimmer of recovery, I can see with clarity a new and
different landscape. And I like what I see:
Renewed optimism. We stared a Depression in the face, and it blinked.
With the worst behind us, we can move forward with confidence, secure in
the knowledge that adversity can be overcome.
A realignment of metrics. No longer are we grieving the loss of glory
days gone by. Instead, we're using the last 12 months as the yardstick
with which to set our future production goals.
Humility has replaced hubris. Everyone's a genius when the rising tide
lifts all boats. It's when the tide recedes that you find out how smart
you really are. Recessions teach us that you're only as good as your
worst year--and hopefully, it's a lesson we'll remember whenever the good
Untapped opportunities. We survived; others didn't. With fewer
competitors in the field, we can begin to grow market share, strengthen
our brand and stake out new territories.
A Feeding Frenzy for Talent. Despite a statistically high unemployment
rate, the need for recruiting services will only increase as baby
boomers retire and our educational system struggles to keep pace with
job market demands. You can't always believe everything you hear in the
business media; but the demographics don't lie.
Greatest Gift of All
The slow economy has been tough in a lot of ways, but it's also paid
multiple dividends. Forced into a sense of urgency, we've become more
resourceful, more determined and more willing to address our weaknesses.
But perhaps the most powerful benefit of the recession from my
perspective has been the realization that I've got business partners who
stuck with me--or reached out to find me. And for those relationships
that have grown and strengthened, I'm eternally grateful. In fact, the
abundance in friendship acquired during turbulent times has far exceeded
the scarcity in income--and perfectly symbolizes the pony I found after a
year of serous shoveling.