By the time this article is published, the huge political upset in Alberta will be over a week old. No one forecast this outcome, least of all the governing Tories who allowed arrogance and their sense of entitlement to call an election more than a year before it was required. This decision has cost Albertans in many ways; first, for the election itself; secondly, for an immediate by-election that will now have to take place, since the former leader of the PC’s decided to take his marbles and go home after the stunning defeat; and thirdly, the cost (potentially) to the province economically, depending on what the new government decides to legislate over the course of the next 4 years.
The Premier-designate has stated publicly that she does not intend to bring sweeping changes to how things are done, and that she will work ‘collaboratively and in partnership’ with our oil industry. As one analyst stated, surely this Party will not be so foolish as to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.
Despite the opinions of some detractors, we all know that the oil industry has been the economic driver, not just of Alberta, but of the country. All we can do for now is hope that this is not forgotten and that this new government will not create an economic crisis.
So, all politicizing aside, how do we prepare ourselves to move the industry forward, despite the recent price collapse and, now, this new unknown?
You are not going to be surprised to find that I will tell you that the best thing you can do is to be sure to continue to market your business!
As I have stated in some of my earlier articles, every industry has cycles, and the oil and gas industry is no different. How we survive these cycles is often a matter of persevering despite the downturn. And, I daresay, few industries are better at doggedly pursuing their goals than the oil patch!
At the time of this writing, oil is trading in the neighborhood of $60/barrel, much improved from just a couple of months ago. The chart below shows the price since the beginning of this year, and the line is going in the right direction. Of course, this doesn’t mean that all is wonderful, but it does mean that things are better.
The best way to weather the current economic, and now political, situation is to continue to make sure you are seen. If you are not currently marketing yourself and your business, this is the time to start. And if you are marketing, do you know if your marketing is effective? It might make sense to arrange for a marketing audit to see if your marketing is working for you, or if you are throwing away your marketing investment.
A few other suggestions for your marketing are:
1. Communicate with all your contacts. Phone, email, send a card or note. Just do it, so they remember you are out there.
2. Network. Attend events. Be seen.
3. Reach out to others, including new people. Offer to help where you can, either though sharing resources, referrals, or any other means. This can result in lead generation. At minimum, it assists in building your reputation.
Time alone will tell what the fallout will be from this electoral upheaval, and “Chicken Little” theories are abounding. Maybe they will come true, and maybe they are groundless. Or, maybe, they will come true but in a way that results in a less devastating result than many are predicting.
Regardless, the reality is that we now have to live with the new government for the next 4 years. How we move forward in this time of uncertainty is up to us. We can sit back and see what happens, or we can buckle up and do our best to prepare for whatever comes our way.
Until next time…
Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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