Ask an Expert: Do this to ride out the recession

ByABC News
July 13, 2009, 10:38 PM

— -- Q: What are you telling people these days with regard to staying afloat and even getting ahead in this tough recession? Steve

A: Recently, I was chatting with my friend Rieva Lesonsky about what a challenge it is to own and run a small business in this economy. The topic was especially salient because, as we are both small business owners as well as writers and speakers on the subject, the Great Recession is effecting us in numerous ways.

You may have heard of Rieva. She is one of the top small business experts out there, but even if you have not, you have no doubt seen her work for many years she was the editorial director of Entrepreneur Magazine and she wrote the bestselling book Start Your Own Business. When I look at her resume being on The Today Show, Oprah, etc. I get jealous. These days she is the CEO of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company specializing in covering small businesses and entrepreneurship.

So Rieva is someone who really knows her stuff, and that is why I was happy to hear that she is conducting an online chat at Bank of America's online small business community on the subject Navigating Your Small Business Through the Great Recession. The chat will be July 16 at 2 p.m. ET.

Sensing an opportunity to share her insights with my readers, I asked Rieva what she is telling people these days with regard to staying afloat and even getting ahead. (So you see, the question above. .. is mine!) She mentioned four things that she thinks can really make a difference right now:

1. Work smart:"Do not waste your time doing things you don't have to do. Use your time wisely and concentrate your efforts on getting the biggest return on your investment of time," Rieva counsels. "So, to the extent you can avoid it, avoid getting caught up in minutiae, especially minutiae that does nothing to help you grow your business."