George Jefferson may be eternally, “moving on up (to the East Side),” but the rest of us are simply moving on – to the New Year and the hope of an improved economy.
That hope seems to be, in part, based on reality.
Case in point?
I’ve heard some version of this phrase every day for the last several weeks – “I can’t wait to kiss 2009 good bye!”
It’s usually followed by some version of this phrase, “I think things are getting better - quotes/orders are running well ahead of this time last year.”
No doubt, that’s good news – and we’re seeing the same trend here at our little business.
But, I also sense there’s something else going on.
I hear it in the voices of the advertisers I talk to on the phone. I hear it in the voices of you, our reader. And, I hear it in the voices of friends, families and local shop owners.
All of these voices ring with the same message -- good, old-fashioned ingenuity, hard work and perseverance sprinkled with a heavy dose of faith.
I can’t even count the number of conversations I’ve had where a business owner relates the changes he/she made to their business model, the new marketing campaigns they’re running or the creative cost-cutting measures they’ve instituted (one’s that don’t include letting people go).
The solutions have run the gamut, from camps who’ve sub-divided their facilities to appeal to smaller and different types of groups to manufacturers who pooled together to host a “community” Christmas party for their collective staffs. Heck, I even read about one company who couldn’t afford to give their traditional Christmas bonus but still wanted to let their employees know they appreciated their work – so all the managers agreed to take turns scraping the ice and snow off employees cars all winter long.
The economy may actually be strengthening (I think it is), but what strikes me is the sense of “I’m not going to let this thing beat me.”
For me, that is the real message of 2009.
The issue you now hold in your hands instinctively follows that very same theme. Inside, you’ll find a powerful story on the challenges that face the Girl Scout camping programs, a camp profile of a successful program in northern Indiana, creative ideas for re-thinking your camp’s marketing plan and/or business model as well as our usual complement of creative programming ideas.
All in all, I’m well pleased with the ideas we bring to the table this month.
Of course, I’d love to hear your opinion on that. Feel free to drop me a line – or stop by our Web site (www.camp-business.com) and comment on any story you want.
Till next month.
Rodney J. Auth