Column by Simon Bridges, Chief Executive Officer of the Auckland Chamber of Business.

Happy New Year! I hope everyone is refreshed after the summer (albeit very wet!) holidays.

As 2023 kicks off, commentators and economists are predicting a challenging year ahead with uncertainty, risk, and recessionary conditions. While this will be a major influence on the way we work, 2023 has the capacity to be a good year for business.

We know being in business is no small feat. Being a small or medium business owner is never easy and this year will be no different. But, recession isn’t inevitable, and it’s certainly not inevitable for you, your business and your people.

Stay confident. Continue to create and innovate. Take power into your own hands. Focus on what you can influence – yourself, your business, and your most important assets, your people. By doing this, you will drive progress for clients with your products and services and achieve results for the business year ahead.  

What’s more, should forecasts unfold and a recession hits, it may well be a shallow one with a predicted ‘soft landing.’ You owe it to yourself to keep investing in your people and operations, so you come out stronger and ready to succeed once more. Ongoing training and growth opportunities for staff is a great example. As my predecessor, Michael Barnett, likes to say, “Praise them for what they can do, train them for what they can’t”.

And remember, the Chamber is here to help. Please go online and check out our tools and services. Make use of our networking, upskilling and mentoring events so you’re not navigating a challenging year alone.

We’d also love to hear how our services could help you more. What are you experiencing? What sort of assistance would you like from us? Email me at and provide your feedback.

While we can’t promise to solve all of life’s problems, our team is committed to making it easier for business in Auckland every day of the year, 24/7.



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