Thursday, September 29, 2011

In favor of recession

Recession, contrary to common opinion, is a needed part of the economy cycle and more importantly for sustaining our civilization.
Booms while great, do have downsides. No need for me to write on the upsides of a boom since they're well known and even fantasized! So to the upsides of a recession:

1. Helps the 'humanity' aspect. During extended booms, its easy for individuals to became part of a rat race ie who has the biggest car, the exotic summer vacation etc etc. Recessions enable individuals to be grateful for what they took for granted. It helps reset the human clock on being content.

2. Improves professionalism. This is my favorite - during booms the dumbest of the lot start to believe an imaginary worth of themselves. During booms, the human resource shortage creates an impression in the heads of the 'not so above average' that they have abilities that need to be coveted by employers. Well, the wake up call during recessions, when the low performers are typically first to be let go helps them get out of their slumber. I've seen engineers being hired in booms who I would hesitate to hire as blue-collar workers, and that puts a dent in any organizations minimum bar of professionalism.

3. Sets up an environment for the next boom. Recessions help people realign such that the bad typically get weeded out and the great get some breathing space to kick around. This sets up the infrastructure for the next boom since exceptional talent is able to focus without being distracted by the not-so-talented.

So next time you hear that we're in a recession, stop and think if you're one of those who needs to realign and/or push harder to be the best that you can be.