Needs vs. Wants


I have been thinking about an old sales rule for the last couple days. As a salesman I learned to determine the prospective customers needs and wants prior to making any recommendations.

Our economy is really no different when you think about its needs and wants as if it was a prospective customer.  There is a huge difference between what our economy needs right now versus what we all may individually want. I would submit to the reader that we will never get what we want out of this economy if the economy doesn’t first provide us with what we need.

The super complicated and most critical aspect of this quandary is that what we may need and want is probably quite different than what large multinational companies need or want right now.  For arguments sake let us make the following assumptions: a typical American will be defined as someone with a net worth below one million dollars and who earns less than $250,000 per year. Unfortunately our typical Congressperson does not fill this definition completely. They have steady employment, health care, staff, manage multiple office locations, live a comfortable life which probably costs more than the $250,000 or less they claim on their tax return. I would not consider them to be typical Americans and yet we rely upon them to represent us.  Their needs and wants do not align with a typical American.

Tax cuts/credits and payroll holidays are terrific when an enterprise has customers and is buying goods and services. The current government recommended actions are more of what free enterprise wants than what they probably need right now. No, what most enterprise’s in our economy need right now are orders, customers and receivables because without these, the wants don’t mean a hill of beans.

Our government can offer up what we want till the cows come home but they will not catalyze an economy which is not responding to an economic defibrillator set to $750 billion volts. Maybe, just maybe, the voltage should be applied to our congress and executive branches in an effort to SHOCK them into the reality of the typical American, you know the one with no customers, no receivables and probably no job.

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