TIME writes: "For hours on that day in December, Dermot Boden and his fellow managers at South Korea's LG Electronics fretted about the future. The same exercise had been taking place in companies around the world. It was 2008, and it was becoming grimly clear just how severe the coming global downturn would be. Boden, LG's chief marketing officer, and the rest of the senior-executive team gathered at the firm's Seoul headquarters to plan how to respond. The outlook for the company's TV and mobile-phone businesses was frightening. They talked of the need to cut costs; one executive recommended using less toilet paper.
But then, says Boden, the atmosphere began to change. The conversation turned to gaining share and building the LG brand around the world. "The rest of the time, we only focused on one thing," he says. "How do we take advantage of the opportunities now being presented?"