A comparison between the crisis in the United States in 1929 and the one occurring now in Greece clearly shows that the sooner the costs of an exit from the crisis are assumed, the less time will be spent suffering from the measures taken to overcome it.
Obviously some aspects of the current economic tragedy of Greece are different from those suffered by the United States during Twenties of the last century. The situation in the Hellenic country is worse, not only because of its aging population structure, but because of its integration into the Euro zone.
The coffee sector should consider whether the current crisis is temporary or whether fundamental alternatives should be analyzed, such as moving towards industrialization to export ground grain with proprietary brands.
After peaking in May of 2012 at $250 per quintal, arabica coffee prices have steadily dropped, settling last week at just over $100. The futures prices are not very encouraging: for December even lower values are indicated.
"Plan for the worst, hope for the best" - Imagining and planning for future crises is critical in an ever more volatile environment.
More and more, events outside of the once predictable economic cycle are affecting companies sales and profits.
In the U.S., for example, in recent years, sales departments have faced the effects of events such as the collapse of the housing market, the Asian financial crisis and the huge fluctuations in the price of energy and raw materials.
The objective is to reduce costs wherever possible, while avoiding giving customers reduced service or product quality.
Cuts in spending affect products or services in different ways. Cuts in administration, for example, are not normally noticed by buyers, but staff cuts in areas that are visible such as customer service or the quality of the packaging may adversely affect the customers’ experience.
When times are tough, surviving in one piece should be the immediate target.
The director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at INCAE (Central American Business Administration Institute), Luis Javier Sanz, spoke with El Periódico of Guatemala on key points to address the key economic crisis.
Seven strategies that, applying Darwinian maxims, Guatemalan businesses are implementing in order to overcome these times of crisis.
An article by Louisa Reynolds in Elperiodico.com.gt details different strategies that Guatemalan entrepreneurs are carrying out in trying to be more creative in order to take advantage of any new opportunities that may arise.
Will the economy die? Not necessarily. This is a moment of change, and with change comes new opportunities.
It should be recalled that this is a cycle, the economy will improve in the future, and then fall again.
This is why we have made 10 observations to maintain a realistic, calm and positive outlook:
1. Vision: The door of opportunities to improve and change the economic reality of Guatemala is opening. This is a time of global and national change. We should ensure that the change is positive.
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