May 242009

The effects of the sunken economy are found in pockets here and there where I live in Orange County, California.  People out of jobs were typically related to jobs or services in the real estate market and especially the  x-mortgage brokers that had the rug pulled out from under them. At least that is how it started. Now we all have brothers, sisters, friends that are lost or have been losing their jobs.

Now it is rippling into every segment of the population and nobody is really immune to it’s effects and fallout. There are many people who are and have been “drinking the president’s Koolaid” when getting their 10 minutes of news when they come home from work and are running their lives as usual.  Then there are the ones like us that read and filter through, understanding that this is not going to go away anytime soon and we all do our part to tighten our belts and also help others. Our stock market is temporarily being propped up, but a downturn is eminent.

The auto industry is the next major one to really unravel.  The silent Giant, Ford has been working away at some very cool and gas efficient models that will probably keep them afloat with the near death of GM and Chrysler.  I have family that is floundering in the auto industry and there are very mixed emotions on where they will be in 6 months or for that matter, 3 months from today.

Those of you who are fortunate enough to have a solid financial life, I urge you to identify a friend or a co-worker that is trying but not making it or is having a time of it. How do you help? Send them a few bucks, make an anonymous bank deposit, make a meal, counsel, pay for something they need as part of their daily lives, get creative, but help. If each of us do our part in our own circle of friends and family, we can really make a difference.

You may be thinking, “how can my help really affect others?” You never know that your encouragement can keep that dad or mom from doing something drastic or having to go without. I am torn between helping others in other countries but I come back right her in our own backyard with people who need our help and attention. It does not take much.

I have been given a gift with the ability to spot a person of family in pain or that needs help. Ever walked by a person that is crying or just looks sad? Do you know what you can do for that person if you asked “are you alright? Is there anything I can do for you?.

Put yourself in their position and it will not be difficult to come up with some ideas you can help others. Ego…? This is not about how good you can feel so keep your blessings to your immediate family and don’t boast of what you have done, it will spoil the gift and sometimes really embarrass the person or family you are helping. Keep it on the down-low.

How does this help you? Indirectly it does because in the process of helping others, it affects how you view the world and others, typically for the better. Get your kids and family involved. If you cannot help financially, help by being there for them, which can make a real difference.

When it happens anonymously  tell me how your helping others affected their lives and how you think you helped them. Don’t use names just speak in generalities.

One person or family at a time.

May 152009

My heart goes out to the dealers that are being cut out of GM / Chrystler system.  As a Corporation, I understant what the suits are thinking and this is a tough tough position all those dedicated hard working people.

I have worked with a franchise and cannot imagine spending many years building the business and the brand and then getting dumped. This move will add a nail in the coffin to the Brands.  I think they should have given the dealers some alternatives to being immediately out of business…. Like…

How bout they only support them if they have can run on their own and the car dealer sells them cars and does not carry any paper. The dealers may or may not be in a credit position to buy them but at least they have a choice over their own destiny. Charge the dealer a franchise fee so Corporate is not spending money allowing the Dealer to again make choices.

Nobody said it was going to be easy and I am not certain what the financial bleeding gain Corporate will have from these cuts, but I can assure you that they probably far outweight the trust and bad press that will proceed, having the buyers consider a foreign car or , better yet a Ford.