Ready for the Rebound

The U.S. economy has already hit the bottom. That’s the consensus among economists. They expect businesses to gradually begin expanding in a few months.  Signs of a recovery should appear by the end of summer, and the rebound’s mounting momentum should become obvious in the fourth quarter.

Now is the time for people starting small businesses to get ready to make the most out of the recovery.

Winners can exist in all industries, says Georgia Tech professor Thomas “Danny” Boston, CEO of the Atlanta-based economics research firm, EuQuant, and a member of the B.E. Board of Economists. Potential entrepreneurs should look at where emerging growth opportunities are occurring.  Even in the out-of-gas motor vehicle industry, hybrid technologies are reinventing the automobile. Digital formats are revolutionizing publishing.

Some industries, however, are chart toppers.  Despite the recession, services related to healthcare and to education have kept expanding slowly. “The health sector and educational sector will continue to remain strong and vibrant and are likely to experience the highest rates of growth during the recovery,” says Boston.  Expect demand to increase for a wide range of both direct health services, such as physical therapy, and health products. Within that industry, elder care is rising quickly.  Healthcare and computer-related job categories take the top four spots on the Bureau of Labor Statistics list of the 30 fastest-growing occupations.  Small businesses providing services in those industries have a good shot at rapid growth.

Tips for Scoring on the Rebound

Read, read, read. Study market and industry trends.  Read literature on the successes and failures of businesses.  “There are some things that an entrepreneur cannot control; ignorance of business and market conditions is not one of those,” says Boston.  “You should not fail because you have not informed yourself.  Business magazines, websites and industry literature are indispensable tools to the successful entrepreneur.  Economic conditions are changing at an incredibly rapid pace, and successful business owners in the future will be those whose knowledge of business and market conditions allows them to stay ahead of the rapidly changing trends,” he says.