Your Country Needs You
Spend Ireland – Saving the Irish Economy
Are we all totally helpless faced with the current recession or is it just possible that each of us could make a difference and pull us out of the hole that we find ourselves in?
I believe that we can all take personal responsibility in both our personal and professional lives and really make a difference to our economy.
The simple principle that drives the whole economic wheel is ‘Spend Ireland’, which is encouraging money to be spent in Ireland and on Irish products and services. We need to fuel the economic spend wheel by putting our euros back into it and ultimately it will come back to us somewhere along the line. It is time to be very patriotic and spend our euros where it will have a direct Irish benefit.
The recent budget is an excellent example of how lack of spending in Ireland can affect all of us – the tax take is down, unemployment is up so we get increased taxes: Would you prefer to spend and enjoy your money rather than it being taken from you at source by the taxman?
How can I play my part in my personal life to contribute to the Irish economic recovery?
• Firstly if you have disposable income don’t be afraid to spend it – there is great value to be had and you can contribute to our economic recovery. Only spend what you can afford and by the way enjoy spending it!
• To oil the Irish spend wheel try to spend your income in Ireland and on Irish products – this can’t be done in every instance but as much as possible make those little choices to ‘Spend Ireland’ and they will all add up.
• These small personal choices can make a huge difference when we all make them:
o Buying Irish products when shopping, everything from fresh food and other product choices – avoid the imported option if possible, it will do nothing for the Irish economy
o Buying that CD in the music store instead of online – the music store could do with that margin
o Eat out instead of buying that ready made meal in the super market – the early bird specials offered by restaurants are great value and they could do with your business. If you but the ready made meal make sure it is Irish!
o Buying your holiday clothes before you leave instead of when you get there
• The big personal choices can make an even bigger difference when we make them:
o If you are in a position to buy a new car and would normally change around this time then buy your new car – your motor dealer could do with the business
o If you have been planning that extension or that redecorating job then go ahead and do it – you will get great value and the builders could do with the work right now
o Holiday in Ireland if you can or choose Ireland for those weekend breaks instead of breaks abroad. Like most of us there are probably loads of special places in Ireland that we have never visited. There is fabulous value to be had as well as terrific quality. The hotels, restaurants, bars and tourist attractions could all do with Irish euros at the moment.
• If the Irish option is more expensive don’t be afraid to ask for a discount and explain that you are trying to spend on the Irish option
I was chatting through all of this recently with friends and they were quite angry with me explaining that the Irish have been ripped off for years and why shouldn’t we shop where it is cheapest?
Of course there is an onus on the Irish service and goods provider to offer good value and this ‘idea’ will only work where this actually happens. We should at least give the Irish supplier the chance to offer the value – the economy needs us to ‘Spend Ireland’.
The much bigger part of the whole Irish spend wheel is the effect of our personal choices in our professional lives, as employees, managers, developers, landlords, business owners, bankers and yes even politicians.
For the business person – buy Irish products and services wherever possible and really work hard at trying to make the Irish option work – if you need to grind out a viable option with your Irish supplier then try to make it happen. Keep as many employees working as possible. If you have the financial strength and performance to see out this downturn sacrifice ‘super’ profits for ‘average’ profits and maintaining employment. You will need your best and experienced staff in better days. Be open and honest with staff and avoid taking advantage of the current circumstances.
For the employees – times are tough so appreciate what it is like at the moment for your employer. Roll up the sleeves, deliver excellent service and go the extra mile whenever possible – this is now an expectation. Be prepared to be flexible if necessary – be fair as long as you are being treated fairly.
For the developer – the previous business model is broken, the same buyers are not there due to banking rules. Look at your sales model and be creative, with some flexibility and other options such as Rent2Buy you will find new buyers and the wheel can start turning again.
For the landlord – your tenants are bleeding and you have many empty properties. Work with your tenants in a partnership way – adopt a new way of working that is fair for both of you and not the usual confrontational model. Full units are better than empty units.
For the banker – you need to start taking reasonable risks again so that the wheel can keep turning.
For our politicians – for God’s sake show real leadership and lead us positively from this awful mess. While you have to do the accounting job you also need to take positive initiatives that encourage business in a real way and encourage the Irish to start taking risks and spending again.
So, there it is. A possible solution to the mess we find ourselves in. Let’s show our colours and play our small part in fuelling an Irish recovery and let us not forget the painful lessons we are learning now in a hurry.
Greg Canty is a partner in Fuzion Communications, providing Marketing Consultancy, PR and Graphic Design services.
For a consultation contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Web: http://www.fuzion.ie Phone :(021) 4271234