The Great Recession was a teachable moment for the entire working class because it taught employees that no one is exempt from potential downsizing or layoffs. This was a humbling period for those who were formerly well-established in their careers; a considerable number of workers started looking for new jobs, and some of those people had been retrenched for the first time ever—making it an entirely new experience for them.
Because the Great Recession taught us that any individual can be laid off when the economy takes a downturn, it’s important that you remain agile in your career—adaptable and prepared to ride out an economic recession. How can you do that? Here are eight ways to prepare for a potential recession.
When layoffs begin, the people most vulnerable to them are those who aren’t viewed as someone who adds value to the company. To avoid that perception, start searching for ways you can contribute and become an essential member of the company.
Deliver exceptional work and seek out special projects or opportunities to contribute beyond the scope of your job description. Be sure to look for ways that you can become more flexible and easily trainable for new work.
Learn new skills
Learning new skills is the greatest way to be a valuable asset to your current employer. Don’t wait for company training events; be proactive about your own professional development.
Consider the most sought-after skills in the company you work for and look for free or low-cost courses that can help you become competent. Learning new skills through self-study will prove you are a self-sufficient, self-motivated employee that is eager to add tremendous value.
Start building new relationships
Solely doing the job expected from you day in and day out is not enough for career stability. You need to build strong relationships and connections with people within the company you’re working for and outside. Those connections will help build new opportunities, and by being a good connection yourself, you lay the foundation for strengthening your network.
By being helpful, pleasant to be around, and easy to work with, you will become more likable to everyone. Improving workplace relationships by nurturing friendships will help you become a people person. When layoffs begin, workers who have strong connections may have allies in their corner, advocating for them to keep their position.
Optimize your LinkedIn profile and resume
Consistently updating your LinkedIn profile and resume will help you hit the ground running when you need to start searching for a job again. If your job hunting tools are up-to-date at all times, then you’ve already got an advantage in the event you’re laid off: you can start looking for work immediately, without scrambling to update everything.
Keeping your resume updated may also save you a lot of time further down the road, as it becomes hard to recount all your achievements and commendations when reflecting on your entire tenure in a position. Update these as they happen to keep track of everything.
Stay on top of all finances
Even for some people who are not laid off, during a recession, it’s not unheard of for salaries to be cut as a way of weathering the storm when there is little money to spare. To prepare for the worst in that respect, create a budget now and work hard towards paying off as much of your outstanding debt as you can feasibly manage. Minimize your expenses to save money for if/when a recession strikes. Although saving isn’t always easy, it’s an important part of preparing for a recession.
Get a side hustle
Starting a side hustle now could ensure that you have something to do if the recession capsizes the work you’re doing. Start a small business or freelance work that you do after hours and can help tide you over should a recession strike.
A recession might affect a certain group of people more than others. That might cripple the business you get if you’re an entrepreneur.
For example, if you are focused mainly on supplying the engineering industry and it somehow takes a hit during the recession, a lot of revenue will be lost. However, when you also try to hedge in other markets, you might be able to mitigate that risk.
Take note of what’s happening in the job market and other industries
Be ready to jump ship when the industry you’re in is headed for a nosedive. To prepare yourself for that, stay in the loop of what is happening in other job markets and industries.
When business is slowing down, ask friends or family about how the industries they’re in are performing. Expand your LinkedIn network. Get to learn the best industries you can jump to whenever a recession hits the sector that you’re employed in.
Becky Holton is a journalist and a blogger at research paper writing service. She is interested in education technologies, assignment writing help, and is always ready to support informative speaking at assignment writing service. Follow her on Twitter.
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