During the financial meltdown in 2008 we all witnessed the markets crash sending our global economy into a tailspin. Job losses mounted and the news wasn't good. I remember when GE stock hit $6.00 nearly bottoming out near "latte" range, Bank of America hit $3.00 and other blue chip names plummeted. I was in awe if I'd ever see stocks this low in my lifetime. (And mind you I'm a pedestrian investor who barely knows how to execute a trade in my Fidelity account.)
I'm the last to give any pure investment advice, but what I do know is that the upturns are about saving and downturns are the best time to be spending.
Downturns are the best times to be building.
In 2008, the world was feeling vulnerable. While people pulled money out of the market, I picked up some GE. Last year when I jettisoned the corporate path and decided to start Pink Petro, I cashed that GE and made almost a triple return. It's what helped me fund this little thing we call Pink Petro (along with your faith and support.)
Things are a little different in 2015. We're living in a world that's seen $40 ish oil price. OPEC ain't budging and neither are US producers. Iran is going to begin to compete again the market while the US is struggling with exporting the resources we've enjoyed developing in the age of Shale. Cities in the USA that were built up during the boom are waiting patiently to see what's going to happen next. Midland, Pittsburgh, Denver, San Antonio - we are all beginning to feel the pain. And, while we transition in this new era of price, a senior workforce of baby boomers is retiring while the next generation of students and newcomers like Preeti Singh, Lily Seidman, Emily Georgiana Spencer, Ashley Donaldson, Thelma Ihunde, are entering our industry at a time of uncertainty, hoping there's a future.
Here's a piece of advice for anyone worrying.
This rodeo won't last.
So how do you make the most of this?
- BUILD YOURSELF. Now is the time to be doubling down on you. Your stock like my GE might be feeling like it's worth $8 but you need to pump intellectual and social capital into yourself to boost your value.
- BUILD OTHERS What separates the men from the boys, the girls from the women and those in the game versus on the bench? Leadership. The time to lead is right now. You don't need permission. You don't need a fancy organization chart to define who you are. Just lead. The time to shine is when everyone else sits in the back row, not when things are good and everyone shines! People remember companies and individuals that demonstrate humanity, humility, services and leadership during times of stress.
- OPPORTUNITY HUNT. For those working, look for ways inside your company to drive value without adding risk. Look for inefficiency and make recommendations. Find an opportunity and own it. Like my GE stock, I took a risk and it paid off. Take risks now. Better to stand out than to "fit in" with fear.
- WRITE IT ALL DOWN. If you don't journal, you should. It's in times of perceived crisis we need to remind ourselves how we persevered through. You don't have to share your thoughts but if you're comfortable, you should. Somewhere in this world is someone who needs to know they are okay, they will survive, and they aren't alone. Express yourself in a way that can help others learn.
Remember what comes up, goes down and eventually goes back up again. Develop a reputation for excellence in good and bad times but never ever, ever, waste an opportunity on a downturn.
Downturns are the best times. We are building Pink Petro during the best time and I am eager every day to see your value (our collective value) rise.
Your turn - tell us all how are you making an opportunity out of this?
How is Pink Petro helping you?
What more can we do to support our members?