Survival tactics for tough times

Andre Thornton experienced a lot of challenges as a professional baseball player. He played for the Indians at a time when they weren’t very good, didn’t draw many fans and played in a stadium that was long past its prime. But Thornton didn’t make any excuses then and he doesn’t play the blame game as the president and CEO at ASW Global LLC. The economy has been tough lately, but Thornton comes into work each day ready to have a great day.

“You have to figure out a way to be competitive and to survive in an ever-changing global marketplace,” Thornton says. “That’s what a leader and his leadership team is always thinking about.”

Here’s what some other leaders we’ve talked to have to say about making things happen during tough times.

“If you can’t articulate, first of all, to yourself and then to your team and then to the prospective audience that you seek, you’re going to grow aimlessly. You’ll grow, but you won’t grow as effectively as you can.”

            Frank Fantozzi, president and CEO, Planned Financial Services LLC (December 2011 Cleveland Fast Lane)

“Don’t just meet people and get cards and then send them a mailer on what your company does. Build that relationship immediately.”

            Lori DeVore, president and CEO, DeVore Technologies Inc. (March 2009 Cleveland Survival Tactics

“If you look hurried and panicked and ridiculous, [employees] are going to feel the same way. But if you look calm and you say, ‘Here’s how we’re going to get through it,’ and you have a plan and can communicate that, I think you’ll be fine.”

             A.J. Hyland, president and CEO, Hyland Software Inc. (February 2009 Cleveland Survival Tactics

Summary: Make sure you’re always working a plan. Take the time to build relationships. Think about how your attitude affects people.