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Staying Positive, Yet Realistic

By: Steve Johnson

11/20/2008 - 25 Comments

Today I attended an annual Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast in my home town and this is what I learned. 

The keynote speaker, Kim, opened in prayer for our local mayors and businesses in the challenging economic times we face.  Kim’s primary message was about how challenging times are when great leadership is needed the most.  

She talked about many of the important business and government leaders that she has interviewed over the years on her Radio program and how many of them were characterized by previous weakness or failure in their life that they recognized as a turning point to focus their energy to lead their city or business into the future. 

Perhaps the most interesting point that stuck with me was when Kim quoted Winston Churchill, who said, “Success is the ability to move from one failure to the next without losing your enthusiasm.”

Business and government leaders must stay positive, yet realistic.  The economy is contracting very quickly, but we have overcome many recessions and even a Great Depression that lasted 25 years.  American’s are a very resilient people, which continue to lead the world in many areas like, health care advancements like medical technology and pharmaceutical research, heavy equipment manufacturing, information technology, military equipment, higher education and a culture of entrepreneurship and hard work.   Leaders must dream big, but operate in reality.

Our nation desperately needs a new generation of leaders to dream big dreams and seek out solutions with a strong determination to achieve their dreams.  It's time to put away the Game-Boy and turn off the TV.

We need leaders to quickly forget about the industries that are collapsing and focus on new industries that the world is desperately looking for new solutions to challenging problems.  We need to move from one failure to the next without losing enthusiasm, so that hope is not lost.  We should turn back to the one true source of hope for our nation. We should look at the history of America and realize that our prosperity was not just dumb luck but a blessing from God, because of our commitment to lean on Him. 

I’m afraid this is not the direction being set by the Obama administration.  Some have even called Obama the first post-Christian president in America history.   Yet, I feel a strong shift coming within the hearts and minds of American to return to its roots. 

The reality is that America is facing a deep and long recession that will result in millions of lost jobs.  Most of the government’s efforts are likely to make the problem worse.  So don’t put your hope on the government to fix the economy or make anything ‘fair’.  Forget what the government is telling us and forget their shifting polices.   They are in over their head.  The economic crisis is going to create a lot of new opportunities for entrepreneurs as many large companies and industries collapse.  A recession based economy has drastically different needs then a consumer based economy.  There are going to be tremendous opportunities to start new businesses in new markets that didn’t exist just two years ago.  

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