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Developing residential land vs. suburban sprawl: Developers talk about expansion in central PA

How do we get Prepared?
By William M. Gladstone, CCIM, SIOR

Two and a half years ago the world was a much different place. The unemployment rate in Central Pennsylvania was well under 4%. Banks were lending money and unfortunately, in some cases were doing so unwisely. New businesses were emerging and people were buying real estate. Life was good. In fact, more people were “living the dream” then compared to now. What was typical and customary then is not at this time. The new ‘norm’ has not yet re-established itself as we patiently watch to see how close we get to the lifestyle we were living once before.

Those of us who have lived through these cycles before know this is exactly what it is, a cycle. The good times will be back, however, we do not know how good they will be or when they will return. With the economy, the jobs, the purchasing of real estate, and the starting of new businesses coming back, we would be foolish not to be prepared. We now have time and many of us may be doing less than we were in prior years simply because the business is not there. How do we get prepared? Do we go to the gym and start working out so we increase our physical endurance and outlast the tough times? Perhaps not such a bad idea since the latest survey shows that 42% of the U.S. population will be obese within ten years. But that is not quite what I had in mind by saying “get prepared” for the upswing. There is no doubt that you want to be physically ready to meet the new challenges, but you also need to be mentally prepared so you can take advantage of this cycle when it hits. Start asking, “What can I do to make myself better and make the world better?” One of these concepts focuses on economic balance, the other on social responsibility. If you have immediate responses to these two questions, I would ask you to rethink these answers because I am not sure they are that readily available. Here are some of the things that need to be looked at introspectively so that the right choices are made.

We should perfect our business models so when the recovery starts, the economic train that pulls out of your station is sleek and streamlined, saving you time and money and allowing you efficiency and productivity as you chase the next bull ride through the years it occurs. Reading and questioning of our age old standards by which we model ourselves in our business and personal lives should be evaluated. Those questions are appropriate in checking if we are only doing things because there is no good substitute. This is the time to understand and realize that when we go into the next cycle, we should be better prepared, more intelligent and more inquisitive than we were during the last upswing, meeting our challenges head-on and solving our issues successfully.

If you are prepared to do these things to enhance yourself and your world, you should be enthusiastic and proud. You should be ready to live the dream like you never lived it before. It is yours for the taking. If you commit yourself to being an instrument of change, you just need to understand that the parameters within which you are currently working will not be the parameters in which you will continue to work and live in the future. You have wonderful opportunities in front of you and change will be inevitable. I advise you to take advantage of the situation and live that dream.

 
 
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