Is The Sky Falling?
By: Bruce S. Berton , October 2008


Consultants Corner News Consulting Manufacturing Clothing □  Fashion Industry Articles



To everyone who is concerned that the world economy is going to fall apart due to what is taking place in the U.S., I say,

True, it will be the survival of the fittest, but for those willing to tough it out, the rewards will be great.

True, we are going to have CONSOLIDATION, which allows for a less competitive marketplace.

True, the big will most likely get BIGGER.

True, we will be in a more controlled and regulated atmosphere.

True, huge salaries taken by top management will not be as prevalent.

True, the false values put on different commodities will be looked at harshly.

True, PROTECTIONIST attitudes will appear in all political speeches and actions.

True, risks will be spread to other institutions to offset business ventures.

True, credit will be more costly and given with high qualification requirements.

True, all markets will slow down.

True, growth will not be the foremost quality rating of a business.

True, the main measure of a world market in trade will become stronger with TRUST.

The following article was written during a past crisis.  It proved correct then, and I believe it will be correct now.


I guess I could use half this column just listing every catastrophic event that became part of our lives last year.

It is said that you can bury your head in the sand like an ostrich.  (No one has ever actually seen this being done by an ostrich, but this is an accepted analogy). I hear people discussing various events that are global in nature, and most will say,
This does not affect me or my business.

There is a lot of history similar to these current catastrophic events, which would indicate that this is really not new, and that everything will eventually fall back into order.

When we look back only as far as our great grandparents, grandparents or parents, who lived their lives at the turn of the century, just think about what was new then. The pace of new events has really been mind-boggling. Yet we, as a society, easily lose interest, show little concern, and quickly forget some of the most spectacular news media coverage about the highest profile catastrophes.

After any one of these catastrophes, Chicken Little would have yelled excitedly, The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

In my humble opinion, the key to maintaining our pillars of strength is TRUST.  When we lose trust, the proverbial pin will pop the proverbial balloon, and then maybe the sky WILL fall.

The infrastructure of our whole business world is based on the understanding that what is contracted for will be fulfilled. The word trust has many meanings, and each one is applicable to all of these events.

We are moving too fast to rely on inexperienced management teams in positions of CEO, COO, or CFO, while they are learning our industry!  This applies to both the private sector and public corporations.

How you use trust in doing business must be thought out very carefully. In today's marketplace, you must enact new safeguards to protect these trusts.

Your people, your institutions, your professional service providers, your vendors, your customers, and all that you hold sacred must be reviewed, and each level should be tested for the safety of your company's future.

Benchmarks that were used in the past must be scrutinized as to their current validity -- are they realistic in this volatile market?

The correct answers do not come easily, and it is a never-ending process.

Use your common sense, and for things you do not know, hire or outsource the people that DO know.

Trust allows for confidence in change, and there is nothing so permanent as change.

Detect your problems, correct the problems, and then prevent them from happening again.

The sky is always falling, but not all at once!  You must build the proper shelters so that you will not be hit on the head, and you must be able to move quickly if necessary.

The path to building a business that can survive the ever-falling skies is one that knows how to delegate TRUST.

In one of the religious books, it says and too, this shall come to pass; however, you must consistently take knowledgeable steps in order to survive a drizzle of problems, or a sustained hailstorm.

Good luck and good health!

By:  Bruce S. Berton


Here are a few of the other recent articles written by Bruce:

Product Branding and Licensing in the Apparel Industry
By: Bruce S. Berton , October 2008

In the Apparel Industry Speaking the Same Language Does Not Mean You are Communicating
By: Bruce S. Berton , September 2008

Is the Glass Half Full or Half Empty?
By: Bruce S. Berton , July 2008

FASHION IS NOT THE ONLY ANSWER Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beholder

By: Bruce S. Berton , July 2008

Will It Be June Gloom Or Summer Spectacular?
June 4, 2008 by Bruce Berton

Bruce S. Berton is a business and management consultant with Stonefield Josephson, Inc., a leading regional consulting and accounting firm with offices in Santa Monica, San Francisco, Walnut Creek and Mexico City. The information in this column is of a general nature.  Readers inquiries are welcome; and may be sent to Bruce Berton, at Stonefield Josephson, Inc., 2049 Century Park East Suite 400 Los Angeles, California 90067 310-432-7437 Direct
866-225-4511 Toll Free
310-432-7519 Fax Los Angeles
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