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Unprecedented – by Rick Sherman



-By Rick Sherman


I have to preface this article by admitting that I have a problem. Everyday I need my "fix" of CNN, the Chicago Tribune, Sun Times and occasionally the Wall Street Journal. i am a news junkie.


Lately, as I've perused the prose of the pundits, I've seen a dramatic shift in how events are portrayed.


  • Unprecedented drops and swings in the market
  • Unprecedented levels of home foreclosures
  • Unprecedented amount of national deficit
  • Unprecedented level of government intervention(Bailout!)
  • Unprecedented power given to secretary of Treasury Henry Paulson
  • Unprecedented, unprecedented, unprecedented!


I remember a time, not so long ago, when "unprecedented" was synonymous with success. It was a term used to describe significant accomplishments, and inspire individuals to achieve collective goals. Now, it seems, it has adopted a derogatory connotation. It's just a simple word really, just one of thousands we hear on a daily basis, but the usage signals a shift in our attitude and aptitude.


So let me ask you, "what do you correlate 'unprecedented' to?" Is it still a word that inspires you? Is it a reminder of the depths our economy has dived to? Is it a silly question? Well, not when you consider the consequences our attitude has on our actions.


Like many of you reading this article, I am a business owner and entrepreneur as well. Like you, I've felt the effects of the current economy, and had to re-strategize in order to gain a new position in the marketplace, I face the same challenges, fight the same fears, and foresee the same opportunities. We have a choice, you and I. Do we see the unprecedented drop in business, and hunker down for a tough road ahead? Or do we acknowledge that we live in an amazingly unique time in history that is filled with both challenges and opportunities? Certainly none of us fear the unknown, or would shy away from a daunting task, for if we did, we never would have made it this far, and accomplish this much.


Remember when you started? Remember how creative and energized you needed to be? There was a sense of purpose, coupled with determination and inspiration. How were those days so different than those we live in now? They are not. Yes the times have changed, but what drove you to success in the beginning is what you need to remember, and rely on now. What do I see as I gaze upon the economic landscape of today and tomorrow? Unprecedented opportunity!



Rick Sherman is a senior level business advisor and coach for Forward Progress, Inc. and the President of New Essence Media, a marketing agency focused on developing strategies through "Intelligent Integration". Contact him at: [email protected]