There is lots of talk of recession these days. Whether the talk is true or not here are 10 things you can be doing for your career to bolster your chances of working through rough times. The best time to start is right now!
1. Skills Proficiency - Be sure to be up to date in your skills. When jobs are scarce companies can easily find new employees who have more advanced skills. Take classes, go to workshops, and join professional associations to stay current.
2. Find Ways To Increase Your Value - Get cross trained so that you have the ability to do more than one job. Specialization is great when there are lots of employees. When companies are downsizing someone who can be used in a variety of positions becomes more valuable.
3. Network - Contact and help other people in your network. It's rough to call people in your network for the first time when you lose your job. Keeping your network alive and active will give you confidence that you could find something else if necessary.
4. Do Not Complain - No one likes a whiner! Yes it is difficult when times are unstable but it serves no purpose to complain about it. Happy people are nice to have around and less likely to get laid off. If you are whining all the time your manager may feel he/she is doing you a favor by laying you off!
5. Cut Costs - This is the time to stick to the budget. Better yet find ways to save. In difficult times the valued employee is the one who doesn't spend more than what was budgeted for. Better yet find ways to save and be a real hero.
6. Generate Revenue - Look for ways to bring in new revenue. Since resources are short, cost effective ways to generate new revenue are valued.
7. Be Visible - This is the time to be a star performer. It is probably not the best time to be away from the office too much. This is the time to be sure your reputation is for work that is high quality, done on time, on budget and without a lot of fuss.
8. Toot Your Own Horn - Let people know about your accomplishments. This is not the time to be modest. While you are networking you can also let others outside your company know about your successes. Publish your results. Speak before groups. Get expert status!
9. Take Initiative - Don't be the person who just does what he/she is told and no more. Look around to see what needs doing and volunteer to take on those critical tasks.
10. Be Prepared - Get your resume up to date, return the phone calls of head hunters and think about a second career. Nobody's job is totally safe so it is always best to have your network in tact, your resume ready, and an idea of where you might like to go. Confidence that no matter what happens you can deal with it, helps you to weather the recession and even thrive!
Most people get concerned when times are tough. In good times they relax and ignore some of these tips. The challenge for you is to make them habits so that even in good times you continue to do what is necessary to move your career forward. Need help? Hire a coach. Coaches help client to get rid of bad habits and beliefs. They make it easier for you to add new good habits to your daily routine.