Life After Business

#167: Rock the Recession: How Successful Leaders Prepare for, Thrive During, and Create Wealth After Downturns

On today’s show, I talk with recession expert Jonathan Slain about his experience, parts of his recession plan, the importance of having a recession plan, and how to find the value of your business. Jonathan also talks about the book he and his cowriter (Paul Belair) wrote, “Rock the Recession”.

Jonathan is a business owner, a recession expert, an author, and an entrepreneur. He and his business partner and coauthor, Paul, have written a workbook and accompanying book about preparing for a recession (“Rock the Recession: How Successful Leaders Prepare for, Thrive During, and Create Wealth After Downturns”) and have a website dedicated to the topic, where you can find information about their programs, organizations, book (and workbook), and where you can find blog posts.

What you will learn:

  • The story behind the book, “Rock the Recession”
  • Jonathan’s background and experience
  • Paul’s background and experience
  • Jonathan and Paul’s exit from their businesses
  • The reason it is difficult for people to think about the future of their business, future exit strategy, and recession plans
  • The background behind the initial “Rock the Recession” workbook
  • What babyboomers scan do to transition to retirement
  • The first step: assessing your situation
  • Who you need to talk work with to assess your situation
  • Second gear: How to tune up your business
  • Freeing up people who aren’t A & B players
  • When do you pull the emergency brake?


The importance of whiteboarding your recession plan so you can prosper in the future recession. Do you understand how ready you are for the next recession? Do you know what your company’s value is right now?

Links and Resources:

Jonathan Slain, LinkedIn

Jonathan’s free 20 question assessment

“Rock the Recession”, Amazon

ARKONA Boot Camp

Reach out to me if you have questions about the boot camp!

About Jonathan:

Jonathan Slain and his coauthor and business partner, Paul Belair, founded to give entrepreneurs a free tool to assess their recession readiness at

Jonathan Slain spent the Great Recession huddled int he fetal position on the floor of his office. He borrowed $250,000 from his mother-in-law to survive. Jonathan paid his mother-in-law back and is now a highly sought-after consultant (and, yes, he’s still married!). Jonathan leverages his experience in investment banking and as an entrepreneur on the keynote speaking circuit because he doesn’t want anyone else to have to borrow money from their mother-in-law in the next recession.

Paul Belair wasn’t scared when the Great Recession hit. He invested $1 million to purchase a business and just five years later sold it for over $70 million dollars. He achieved an American dream exit by using the Recession Gearbox model outlined in this book to create an intentional recession preparation plan. Paul is a CPA and an MBA, and currently serves as chair of the Young Presidents’ Organization Construction Industry Network.

Brought to you by Ryan Tansom of Life After Business