News platforms have been bursting over the last week with stories about the recession Australia is now in. There are the headline stories based on the numbers and the personal stories of people losing their businesses and homes, dreadful stories, sad stories.

It is easy to get drawn into the doom and gloom news cycle. Unfortunately, news outlets think bad news drives clicks, and, so, they run the stories. The stories feed into themselves and can make matters worse.

In local communities and in local retail businesses, we think it is helpful that we act against feeding the doom and gloom stories. It is helpful that we do nothing to negatively impact consumer confidence. In fact, we think it is valuable to do the opposite, to encourage happiness and optimism.

Our suggestion is: focus on what has been working for you in 2020, present as business as usual, bring in new product, change displays, host in-store events, be active on social media, play happy music, run competitions, be a good local retailer.

It is these types of activities that distance your business from negative perceptions relating to the recession.

Yes, this is a tough time. Worrying about it being a tough time will not help you move through it.

You can’t control that there is a recession.

You can control what your business does. That has to be the focus.

As a business, we have been through two recessions. Each was different. This time around it is expected to be worse because of the global Covid situation. The reality is that for many small business retailers, there are elements of Covid that help your businesses. In many retail businesses we see, revenue is up in 2020 so far. This is good news. Indeed, there is plenty of good news out there.

Be attuned to opportunity. Also, keep a low profile as no one likes a bragger during times of adversity.

Sure, the economy is in recession. Our businesses, while part of the economy, are not the economy. Many of us are doing well, many of us have plenty to be optimistic about.

Let’s be positive. Let’s manage for optimism. Happiness feeds stronger and more appreciated businesses.

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