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Anticipates Business Conditions in 2010

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Society for the Advancement of Consulting® (SAC®) asked its global membership to describe business in the next year, especially in light of the financial turmoil, political conflicts, and technological advances that are proliferating.

"We're seeing more positives sooner than we suspected," notes Alan Weiss, PhD, CEO of SAC. "Here are representative reports:

"Uncertainty will flourish in 2010. Businesses and whole industries will thrive while others lag seriously. The only certainty is that those who wait for certainty will lose," says Ann Latham, president of the Massachusetts consulting firm Uncommon Clarity. She recommends that businesses act now to identify new opportunities and invest in their future. "Business-as-usual may never be usual again. Cost-cutting is a battle of diminishing returns. Waiting erodes strength, energy and assets." Ms. Latham, who helps companies large and small improve their performance, goes on to recommend businesses invent their own recovery now. "And if you don't have the wherewithal to chart that path, get help!"

Lisa Anderson, President of LMA Consulting Group, Inc. predicts, "Whether the recovery is weak or robust and whether it is short-lived or long-term, there is no doubt that the business environment has changed. 2010 will be a 'new normal.' In my research and through observation in working across multiple industries and continents, I've seen a return to fundaments, which includes three core principles: 1) Cash is king; 2) Service is paramount; 3) Execution is everything. For further detail, please refer to my recent newsletter feature article:

Cory VanBuskirk, President of CVB Consulting Group ( believes that 2010 will see the return of the customer. "The themes of the past 18 months have been retrench and retool. Savvy businesses know that they can't save their way to success. We've been working with our clients on developing their strategic thinking skills and positioning themselves to identify and seize emerging opportunities," says VanBuskirk. "The floodgates won't burst, but 2010 will see a selective and measured opening up of the marketplace. Customers will be looking for businesses that have the vision, resources and ability to execute quickly and effectively."

Dr. Maynard Brusman is a consulting psychologist and executive coach. He is the president of Working Resources, a strategic talent management and leadership coaching firm in San Francisco, California He offers a few insights:

"The inevitable constraints this tough economy imposes on companies provide fertile ground for innovation because necessity truly is the mother of invention. Companies that learn to innovate more quickly, cheaply and with less risk will emerge from the downturn stronger than ever.

"To succeed, smart executives will need to adopt a different mindset and effective frameworks to determine what to start doing, stop doing and do differently. Successful businesses heading into the New Year will embrace continuous change and a disruptive-innovation mindset. Tough business environments force companies to take a hard look at innovation. Companies that master these challenges and focus on attracting and retaining top talent have a chance to thrive. Those that don't are sure to struggle."

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