The Year In Review

Another year has passed for Lifeline Business Solutions and it certainly has not come without its challenges. 2011 began with great optimism that we were finally climbing out of the worst recession since the Great Depression. We were hopeful that consumer confidence would return and business would begin to grow again. Read More

Unfortunately so many issues affecting the economy have been totally out of our control. We have watched and listened to the daily news on the financial plight of European countries throughout the year and the effect it has had on the Global stock markets. Every time there was news of another Euro country in debt crisis we saw the TSX and DOW yo-yo up and down with no overall growth.

This has been a considerable strain on our own personal investment portfolios (RRSP's) and it has severely affected consumer confidence. People are constantly asking themselves the question, "Is there going to be another global recession and will I have a job tomorrow"?  We saw the indecision and failure to act between the European leaders and the concern this has caused in the world markets. Sadly we have also seen the American politicians for what they really are, forgetting about the economy and suffering population in preference of their positioning for the next election.

There was a fascinating piece on 60 Minutes on Sunday about the Sarbanes Oxley Bill that was passed in the US a number of years ago. This was supposed to be the teeth that would prevent the misappropriation of funds and fraud that happened with Enron and the like. According to 60 Minutes, after years of government agency investigation, not one Wall Street banking or investment house executive has been charged, let alone prosecuted, despite mountains of evidence. For the most part the perpetrators of the sub-prime mortgage melt down have walked away.

This is very disheartening because all of these issues affect our business. However, not all is doom and gloom. There are some very exciting emerging markets in Brazil, India and China to name a few. Canada continues to be a leading force in the financial markets represented by our strong banking system and great resources. We have also demonstrated the willingness to go after white collar crime. I believe that as stability returns to the markets, Canada will be one of the first countries to flourish.

For my small part, it has been incredibly rewarding to work with owners who have embraced financial management as the core philosophy of their business development. Some have used Lifeline Business Solutions to simply help them better understand the positioning of their dealership and identify opportunities to improve. Others have gone the full route of building business plans for their future. Regardless of the reason, it has been their secret weapon to fight against a stalled economy.

In a year that has been as challenging as 2011, it is not always how much more profit can be made, but the ability to avoid a loss. Our optimism at the beginning of the year may have been overstated for some, but by working the plan on a month to month basis, owners have been able to make adjustments to their business model that has avoided potential losses.

I would like to thank all of you for taking the time to read my newsletters this year and hope that it has shed some light on new approaches to your business. I would also like to thank those owners who I have had the pleasure of working with throughout 2011. I appreciate your trust and sincerely hope that the experience has brought a renewed enthusiasm for your business.

If there are specific financial or business subjects that you would like more information on, please feel free to contact me.

While we will continue to face challenges in 2012, I am optimistic that new opportunities will present themselves. I look forward to the pleasure of being a part of helping your business realize greater potential and enhanced profitability.

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