- We’ve been hit by an “economic” rogue wave… we’re all leading in a new reality as it’s nearly impossible to predict what the future holds
- The “old normal” may not come back for a long time if ever
- Rough patches force new levels of courage and creativity, it’s not optional anymore
- Prioritization and resource allocations get very focused
- Leaders were created for times like this, teams can form their strongest bonds in the hardest times
- What is coming out of you in these tough times that calm seas never bring?
- October, 2008, stock market dropped 1800 points, people starting losing their jobs in droves- When the wave hit, strategies had to change on a dime.
- In the hardest of times, what a great opportunity for the church to step up and step in to the crisis. Do we still believe the local church is the hope of the world?
- “Some of you have never been on the receiving side of giving… you may need to humble yourselves and be willing to be served.”
- Is your church “being the church”? Are you stepping into this opportunity?
- As individuals and leaders of business, are we rolling our sleeves up to help more now than even?
- Willow has created margin before and after their services to help people relieve the added tension and stress they are feeling through worship, the arts, prayer… an added 5-20 minutes before and after the service
- Financial planning when revenue is going down while needs are rising is tough, the numbers don’t add up…
- Jack Welch, “In a crisis, cash is king.” All organizations need cash reserves to help buy “time” to make adjustments. 25% of annual needs in long term cash reserves, individuals 6 months of earnings
- Make 3 buckets, A/B/C… C- If your revenue dropped 50%, these would be the initiatives to go, Bucket B- 75% of revenue lost, what would go? Bucket A- The thing we would never stop doing…
- When cuts are made, try to give people to give months notice, not days… be generous in severance packages
- Willow budget standards: 50% of revenue to staff, 10% given away, 10% “wins of the spirit” flexible planning for budget changes mid-course , 15% ministry budgets, 15% facilities/utilities/debt service…. adjust accordingly
- People will still give money to a white hot vision… How’s your vision? How are you communicating it?
- People will still be incredibly generous if you teach them, lead them, and cast the vision
- 2 Chronicles 16:9 God is looking for people that are “fully” for Him… He wants to use us and pour out His plan through us
- Are we creating working environments to fully allow our people to soar?
- “How the Mighty Have Fallen”- Jim Collins book….. How many absolute key leadership seat positions in your organization? What % of those key people are filled by those key people? What is our plan for filling the rest of those seats with those key people? Are we developing back-up positions for those key seats for those key people?
- How are you managing this new reality? Are you taking care of you? Can you sustain yourself at the current pace and pressure? How are you replenishing yourself?
- “The pace at which I’m doing the work of God is destroying God’s work in me”- BH 20 years ago in his journal
- Romans 8:6 When you’re in sync with the Spirit, you’re full of life and peace…. Are you filled up?
- The more your tank empties, the more fallout that’s happening to the people around you
- Who fills you up? Who depletes you? Fill your tank, hang out with “fillers”….
- “When I listen to God more slowly, he speaks to me more clearly”- BH devotional time
- The best thing you can bring to your team, company, organization, and family is a “filled up bucket”… What are your followers seeing from you these days?
- God is not done. Hold on to Him… he wants to do great things in our day and through your leadership.
The drumbeat from the $787 billion dollar stimulus package has been jobs, jobs, jobs. Last week President Obama visited Elkhart, IN to help sell the 4,000,000 jobs the bill would save and/or add. At that price tag, we are paying a staggering $196,750 per job. If the goal is to create jobs, let’s do it in 90 days (4-6 times faster) and for 1/2 the price. Here’s how:
- Offer $49,000 grants each year for the next 2 years for each new job created by pre-qualified/awarded businesses
- The $49,000 would cover the cost of salary, insurance, and other benefits for each employee (actual salaries could vary, this would be an average)
- Businesses would hire these people within the first 90 days of the program launch
How would you launch it?
- By district, grants would be allocated and prioritized by those hardest hit. Our elected Representative (in our case, Joe Donnelly) would be charged to form a quick team of local business minds and economists to review business applicants in their district
- Businesses would be selected on merits such as: ability to retain the jobs after two years, job training offered to new employees, benefits to local community, current strength, etc
- This goal of the selection process should be to keep it simple and swift
- Let’s launch this April 1, 2009
- Immediate impact on monthly job loss numbers, rather than seeing the 500,000 jobs lost in February, the American public would see these numbers subside or even reverse for a period of a few months
- Consumer confidence could improve on the news of a stimulus working… immediately
- Actual price tag would be less by eliminating unemployments costs of those sitting on their couch rather than employed through the grant program
- Millions of workers would have an opportunity to be retrained in a new industry, employers would be able to allocate training resources they would not normally expend
- Federal deficit for 2009 could be drastically reduced
- Businesses that are waiting to hire could hire immediately. Not all companies are struggling, but most have hit a cautious, hiring freeze button
- Rather than hire workers by contracts that could end in 6 months or two years (in the current plan), thousands of businesses would want to retain these newly trained workers after the two year grant
- How would that be fair? Fairness is already at issue. Someone is going to get the contract to build a bridge in Minnesota, some other company is not. People are already in line for bailouts to save their industry. This would be aimed at “creating” vs. “saving”
- Couldn’t we get burned again by corporate America? These grants could be monitored and paid in “arrears” once businesses have demonstrated they’ve maintained their payroll levels, businesses would not simply receive lump sum deposits when approved to spend in other means (as we’ve experienced in the banking industry)
- How would be administer it? By having it handled by district, it immediately spreads our risk, creates accountability, and shares workload for each Congressional Representative and their staffs. Local chambers of commerce, municipal governments, and community leaders could all assist
- What about all the other needs in the current bill? Anything beyond jobs is simply “spending”, we should call it for what it is. I’m not saying some of these items aren’t valid or are certainly needed, but the concrete in a bridge is a “material cost”- not a job.
President Obama, Congressman Donnelly, the company where I work has 50 new jobs ready to go in the South Bend/Elkhart/Michiana area if this were approved…. we’re in. I’ve already talked with one of our owners, we have scores of resumes in hand, and we’re dead serious. We would train, deal with the human resources strain, find room, bring in computers, and whatever else it would take to make this happen. I’m confident that thousands of businesses would step-up to do the same. Small business all across America can lead this effort for recovery for half the cost and 400% faster. (If you are a business owner or influencer, feel free to send this or a version of this to your Representatives to let them know you’ve got jobs ready as well)
I’m not special, but I would be willing to help lead this effort. Just give me a call.
Mr. or Mrs. Banker:
You’ve been receiving an increasing amount of bad press for the millions you’ve earned in salaries and bonuses despite the meltdown of the very entity you led. Millions of us who are part of the “have much less” masses don’t understand the lifestyle afforded to you while “Main Street” is suffering, losing their homes, their jobs, and their retirement accounts.
I believe this is a time of great opportunity for you. Our expectation is that you know the “system” much better than any of us, that you’ll continue on in amassing piles of fortune for your years on this earth, and if you did participate in some type of wrong-doing, you’re going to get away with it. What an opportunity to do the unexpected.
Give 80% (or greater) of the earnings you’ve made over the past 5-10 years directly to the situation at hand. Too little of a step would risk being simply “trite” or even more insulting. If you’ve made $100 million in the past 5 years:
- Purchase 500 homes that are listed in foreclosure or are upside down in value for $80 million, rent these homes to the original owners for a substantially discounted rate so they have the opportunity to get back on their feet.
- Provide $4,000 in funds paid directly towards the mortgages for 20,000 homes from your institution to help people catch-up on their payments that are behind. 20,000 families could be helped!
- Or some other alternative that would best help the situation, there would be several options. You could form a great team to come up with a creative plan.
Would this make sense financially for you? No. Might your lawyers warn against this concept as a potential for an appearance of guilt? Yes. In fact many or all of your closest advisors will tell you you’re crazy. Will there be millions of skeptics rolling their eyes at you thinking you’re “up to something” and it’s not enough? Unfortunately, yes.
But, you will be leading. Despite the naysayers, millions also will regain hope in people and will be forever inspired by your actions (myself included). Thousands of families will have a glimmer of hope rather than being faced with desperate, hopeless choices. You may inspire others to take similar actions which will only lead to more hope and changed lives. And while pundits may question, you will know your real story.
Will it be you? Will you take this courageous step? Your life forever will be changed and I would challenge to say it would be the greatest financial achievement in your life.
I am watching with anticipation.
Mark Meyer…. and I suspect thousands or millions of others….