Companies that have survived the recession, such as those represented at Quality Service Contractors Power Meeting XXXI July 16-18 in Colorado Springs, Colo., should be proud of their accomplishments.

“We’ve become smarter and leaner during the recession,” consultant Gene Marks told QSC members. “We all have more opportunities for growth and more opportunities for profits as a result of the recession.”

The recession has changed the banking industry, causing banks to look more carefully at whom they are lending money. As a result, Marks said, banks are giving money to people who actually deserve it.

“Pick a good local community bank to get a relationship with,” he said. “Banks have money they want to lend but not to risky ventures. They want to loan it to us.”

Companies also are investing in themselves, Marks said, because it makes more sense than putting money in stocks and bonds. Deductions on income allowed in the economic stimulus package are prompting firms to buy equipment and other assets. In addition, they’re cleaning up spare parts and selling off scrap.

“Another place to put your money during the downturn is the training of employees on safety, sales and computers,” he said. “States are reimbursing employers for training.”

Darwinism caused by the recession has culled some competitors from the market, he noted. Survivors have more opportunities to grow.

“It’s survival of the fittest; now is the time to grab customers,” Marks said. “We need to get more aggressive. The economy has taught us to do that.”