THE SKY IS FALLING! (But not really)

I watch lots of CNBC…probably 2 or 3 hours a day both before and after the bell.  Admittedly, that’s a heck of a lot of time to spend watching “the market” and the economy as a whole.  But the truth is, I’m entranced.  You see, from 7am to 9am and again after dinner, I see graphs and charts and forecasts all pointing to the widespread economic calamity in which we now swim.  Yet between 9am and 6pm, when I’m working, I see the exact opposite as do most of my friends.

This weekend, I had three seperate conversations with three seperate South Texas business owners.  Three operate in the oil-field space (supposedly one of the hardest hit) and one works in agriculture.  All 4 of them had record sales months in December that they shattered in January and probably will surpass yet again in February.  What gives?

My theory, which crosses all types of industries including 0il, agriculture, technology (my industry), and many others is this:  large companies who have bloated their payroles with non-essential personel are getting slaughtered.  They have too many processes and procedures and too many people with poorly definied jobs.  They are so caught up in the mess within their own walls that they can’t serve the customers they have been counting on for years.  And small companies, like mine and the ones I mentioned earlier, have the agility to jump in quickly and steal the business that the large companies are losing.  

Frankly, it’s a perverse form of “trickle down economics” at its finest.  And while CNBC certainly has the right forum to pound out the message that large companies are getting kicked around – and they are – don’t forget that the heart of America’s economy is prospering right now.  For the first time, big companies and accounts with lots of money are giving small folks a chance because the various pains in the ass that come from dealing with large entities can be removed in dealing with someone small.   So next time you see a looming job cut at a big company out there, try and keep in mind that while this is undoubtedly bad news for the folks losing their job, someone out there is going to get the business that used to go to that big company and it is going to make their business stronger then ever.

One Response

  1. Another issue is the blue chips got lazy. They were too busy enjoying the money and fun times but forgot to look around the corner. They missed the changing economy, changing world and more important – they missed the other guys paying attention (usually the small guys).

    I am making a generalization here. Not all the blue chips are suffering. The paranoid ones are doing just fine (as Andy Gove; ex-CEO of Intel, says only the paranoid survive). I think we can all learn a great lesson here. Pay attention to your competition and the ever changing world. Those that pay attention and adjust make money off the changes.

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