Guest Post

Those That Fear Are Lost

by Mark Goldstein

In the words of Sting, "Those that fear are lost."

A tough economic climate can bring out the best and worst in companies. Fear of failure can motivate change and give us the courage to act, but as an ongoing attitude, fear creates a sure formula for failure. You have to believe, to feel in your heart and soul that you can succeed in any situation and in any environment. A clear vision, a sense of certainty, and lots of hard work and persistence, has meant success against all odds for so many successful companies. Our small consumer products company competes against many giant multinational corporations. Without the conviction that we can succeed, we would have failed before we ever started.

My friends accuse me of being blindly optimistic. On occasion, my attitude has failed me for I have not made the hard decisions or taken the tough actions that I should have. It has also served me well in those cases where I never realized that the odds were against me, so I just moved forward with the belief and certainty that I could succeed. A bad economy has created a real challenge for many second level consumer brands like ours. Most large retailers have started to reduce shelf space and only feature the mega brands. For companies like ours, this situation makes it tough to introduce new products — but we will not stop. We keep pushing forward with our development and introductions of new products working very hard to try and meet new, emerging consumer needs. Even as tough as things are, we choose to remain optimistic. It is the most difficult to believe when things are tough, but it's when things are stacked against you that true courage emerges.

Mark Goldstein is a 53 year old S.O.B. (son of boss) who has the blessed opportunity to work with a great group of people in the family business making, marketing and distributing mass market consumer products since he was 10.

  1. When Growth Stalls is the book I have been reading, this lead me to the site. I enjoyed reading the guest post and feel compelled to “hang in there.” Often times it is very lonely at the top and finding or having a sound board or Group of peers is impossible. My company has really gone thru some difficulties (pavement maintenance contractor) with petroleum prices, a very unexpected move, cancer striking my 7 year old nephew bad,(my brother works for me in sales;lost sales, dropped accounts and much time away) the home market crashed which affected road construction and filtered down to a large chunk of revenue gone overnight. There is a large amount of competition from companies that are not really qualified to do work, but since standards have dropped along with prices it appears that anything goes. This includes Municipal contracting where it used to take a track record, integrity, bonding and skill.

    The long and short is “it” is really difficult to keep your chin up, good books and positive reinforcement along with the will and desire to stand true is sometimes the silent partner that needs to speak up. Your inner compass needs a good bump every now and then to remind you which way is true north.

    Comment by Glenn — 10/28/2009 @ 6:00 AM

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