A few weekends ago, we had one of our famous Round Table events here at The Sanctuary. The registrations maxed out quickly – with the limit of 45 attendees. So, we had 45 excited Free Agent Academy (next one is June 5-6!) business owners, eager to share ideas and bursting with enthusiasm about the opportunities for 2009.

But wait, haven’t these business owners heard we are in the middle of a recession. Don’t they know that no one is buying anything but bare necessities? Are these people crazy? Shouldn’t we tell them how bad things really are -- why no one with a realistic outlook would even be thinking about starting a new business now?

Fortunately, our God-inspired human nature will not allow that to happen. Downturns and recessions always stimulate new ideas and new companies.

HP, FedEx, and Microsoft were all started in economic downturns. And I am confident that right now, in a garage somewhere in NoWhere, USA there is a young Bill Gates or Fred Smith or Thomas Edison who is tinkering with his/her plan for more great inventions and companies that we’ll see in the coming months.

Why? Perhaps some old common sayings can remind us of timeless truths. We have heard that:

"Good is the enemy of the best." When things are okay, it’s tough to take the initiative to change. When the good has disappeared, people find their best skills and talents and start moving.

In a tornado, even a turkey can fly.” When things are easy, everyone can look like they know what they’re doing. Anyone can be a realtor, mortgage broker or home builder. When times get tough, those with true skill stand out and survive.

"Necessity is the mother of invention." When you have no good options, you can get pretty creative. When our gas supply is threatened, we see an explosion of solar and wind options for energy. When our jobs disappear, people realize “security” is a myth and many decide to start their own company.

"Waste not, want not." Companies started in the tough times tend to have fewer competitors and are forced to be more efficient in their management of resources.

Don’t quit your day job without a plan. But be careful of criticizing that neighbor kid down the block who is launching the next Domino’s Pizza. Without a plan of your own, you may find him to be your next boss.

Published June 3, 2009.


 Dan Miller is today's leading authority and personality on careers and 'Work You LoveTM'. As bestselling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love, and now No More Mondays, Dan reaches over a million people every month ia his newsletter, podcast, and blog with the best trends and opportunities in the workplace and small business. For more information, visit http://www.48days.com.