2020 A Tough Year Ahead

With the failing of the country’s state-owned enterprises, a tough economy and slowdown in the mining and construction industries, owners and investors in the surface mining industry should take heart that the industry still holds many opportunities for those who remain committed.

So says surface mining industry association, ASPASA, director, Nico Pienaar, who believes that the difference between success and failure in the surface mining industry mostly relates to the attitude of the owners and employees of the company rather than the state of the economy, diminishing commodity prices or rising costs.

Nico Pienaar of ASPASA

With members across the country, he says that as many companies are thriving as those that are failing. While they face the same odds as their peers, those who are thriving are most often the ones who have a positive outlook, participate in the association’s training and other initiatives, and those who constantly strive for ways of doing things differently in a changing economy.

 Toughness required

“There are undeniable factors that can influence the success of a business, but a positive approach and never-say-die attitude can still go a long way towards steering a company in the right direction. And, we have noticed that while some companies had been scared-off by negative reports, many of our members choose to take the lead from their own experiences and situations, rather than hinging their expectations on media reports or public sentiments.

“Based on these experiences I have compiled an informal list of traits that I have noticed sets many of the top performing mines apart from the struggling ones. This is the Top 10 list of actions that can be taken to make 2020 a great year:

  1. Remain positive and adopt a can-do approach towards reaching company objectives
  2. Do not be influenced by negative sentiments, as they may not apply to your sector or even geographical area of operation
  3. Study and know your own market so that you do not have to rely on news and television to influence your decisions and determine your business confidence
  4. If you have the money to expand or invest in resources capitalise on the opportunity and grow your business
  5. Never neglect maintenance of your plant, equipment and fleet as you may need to act quickly to capitalise on opportunities
  6. Never look for short cuts to save money. Rather look for opportunities to make more money.
  7. Always maintain the highest possible levels of quality, as this is a long insurance policy to ensure customers keep using your product or services
  8. Nurture your employees and train them to look for positive opportunities. Never accept negativity and especially do not allow non-performing staff to blame poor performance on the state of the economy. Rather encourage them to seek opportunities in the place of negativity
  9. Maintain a never-say-die approach even in the face of adversity
  10. Plan to succeed independent of outside factors

Nico concludes, “Those who believe that the downturn is across-the-board and don’t look for business will not do very well and may even fail in future, however those who look for solutions and new markets are set to thrive. If you have given up or are overwhelmed by the bad news of the economy, then your opposition may already be lining up to buy your business on auction one day. Rather stay positive, keep doing the right things right and be part of the success story.”

For more information, visit: www.aspasa.co.za.

 

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