Publisher's Viewpoint

As we open 2011, we've fully accepted the tough realities of our economy. According to political pundits, we face a slow and protracted recovery and possibly another dip! Accordingly, this won't happen as long as the right actions are taken by the Federal Reserve, banks and the legislature. Ok, aren't the right actions what we've been debating for years now?

One of the significant concerns regarding another dip is deflation, not seen at your gas pumps or grocery stores but most everywhere else. If we keep being paid less for the products and services we sell, then we have less operating capital, thus continued cuts must be made. This will drive more companies to bankruptcy or completely out of their markets, raising unemployment, causing more foreclosures and on and on down the rabbit hole.

Add value and don't just low ball prices

It's not easy to hold a fair market price in any industry when one's competitors have resorted to low balling to get business. I deeply respect companies who have added value to their offerings and have solid competitive pricing. But many companies have just dropped to their knees and are selling on price alone. Some are hoping to survive this way, although this is not a sound business strategy for the economically challenged in a protracted recovery. Successful companies have done it as well because it's easy, gains them share and they don't have to lift a finger to do it! They are not interested in the extra work needed to bring value to their customers. If people are buying lazy business strategies, they're going to get exactly what they paid for and that's nothing special in the end or anything that adds value. With this strategy the bright and clever will have maneuvered around them by the time they come up for air.

Personal innovation and creativity come from within and are necessary

Deflation is our enemy nowadays and we have to get out there and fight it. We can't let the creatively challenged be in charge of the future! These are not the principles that America was founded on. Acknowledge that the lazy are leaving the door open for the intelligent and the caring-so get to it. Get your groove on and go for it.

The lack of spending coupled with high unemployment numbers continues to breed a lack of trust in our future but we all have a stake in making the outcome positive. The constant arguing and lack of resolutions in Congress add to this and the national media have not been helpful, as bad news sells and they're constantly battling rating wars. They're not the first people to jump on the good news train. What was it that Franklin D. Roosevelt said: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself?" I know it's not that simple but lack of confidence is a big issue in this recovery or lack thereof.

My financial analyst is very confident about our economy, saying that most businesses are experiencing growth at different levels and keeping expenditures very low which means profits are recovering even though we're not seeing spending. I'd say this sums up my company in a nutshell! And I suspect it's not so different with most of you.

We need positive news. And I personally invite you to share positive news with us, so we can share it with the industry. Please send it along to We'll dish it out with a side of encouragement and energy.

I've talked to many companies who are doing very well and it's not because they are undercutting their neighbors. They have markets where they have developed expertise and they have multifaceted solutions designed specifically for their customer's needs. Yes, few are making the profits they used to but things are improving and 2011 will be better-as long as we don't let deflation get the better of us. We have to fight deflation in every way we can.