The Upside of the Downturn

Emma De Vita reviews Geoff Colvin's tips for managers

Some people always see the silver lining in the dark cloud. One of them is Geoff Colvin, author of The Upside of the Downturn: 10 Management Strategies to Prevail in the Recession and Thrive in the Aftermath. According to Colvin, the smart manager, rather than slashing costs and firing staff, sees the recession as an opportunity to restructure, reinvent and re-imagine the organisation, and to lay the groundwork for future growth.

Colvin offers 10 management strategies to guide you, which include resetting the priorities of your organisation from lofty ideals to practical goals and investing in the areas that make your organisation unique and valuable.

Of particular interest to the third sector manager is the chapter called "Protect Your Most Valuable Asset". This is about your staff and why it's a stupid idea to make them redundant: it's better to keep them on your books and loyal to your organisation. This might mean reducing hours or offering them sabbaticals, but it will also mean that when the upturn comes, you'll have highly committed staff, grateful that you've seen them through the bad times.

And if a charity can't offer a little charity, who can?

- Emma De Vita is books editor of Management Today

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