A Plea to all the Fat Cats

On Friday we learned Canada lost more jobs in October than economists were expecting.

A whopping 54,000 Canadians were handed pink slips last month, according to Stats Canada, which pushed the country’s unemployment rate to 7.3 per cent. In fact, it’s the worst one-month loss since February 2009, when the country was deep in a recession.

Jobs are a lagging indicator they tell us where we have been as an economy. But they also give a peak into where we are headed. The numbers show, the slow down that experts have been predicting, is now here.

Things are about to get even slower. But in my opinion it will be for the greater good and there is plenty Canada’s wealthiest individuals can do to help the economy get back on track.

What the recession of 2008 and 2009 did was delay the inevitable. Governments spent their time and money focusing on preserving the old way of life through bailouts and incentives. Three years later, the world is in more debt with just as many problems.

What now?

The focus is now turning to cutting back.

European nations are already being forced to reduce public services and to start living within their means. Seems simple enough. The rest of the world’s governments need to get on board with becoming leaner and more efficient.

As individuals we need to do the same as well. All of us should be looking at our month-to-month expenses and finding ways to cut back and pay down debt. There’s no more economic stimulus package that is going to save our economy. We have to get real about our spending.

Canadian companies and businesses have to do the same.

Higher unemployment is a direct result that companies are still paying their upper management to much and they’re still spending beyond what they can afford. This means they have less money to spend on new projects that generate money. Without those profits companies look to save money and that often comes in the form of job cuts.

I beg of you….

This is my plea to all Canadian CEOs and government heads. Or the people I often refer to as the “Fat Cats’ of society. Its time to take a BIG pay cut. It’s time to get reacquainted with your bottom line and to understand what you need to do to stay profitable. And do this without cutting jobs. If you can’t lower your own salary inevitably someone in your company is going to be unemployed. That will mean your productivity will go down.

We’re all in this economic downtown together and if you’re in a privileged position of employing people you must do everything you can to keep those people in a job. High employment is bad on all levels. It’s bad for the economy and bad for the morale of a society.

Frustration leads to decreased GDP and less creativity.

It’s true that sometimes the best small businesses are born during a recession. But for every good small business there are hundreds of unemployed disenchanted people who are not feeling good about their own situations.

If you have the power to keep our economy afloat its your duty to do it. The time of fat paychecks and bloated bonuses has passed. Now we must focus on cutting costs and getting everybody back to work.  Hopefully 7.3 per cent is the peak of our unemployment situation.

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