Are you one among the many today who are continually worried about your company and whether you might be the next person called and let go?
If you are, you certainly have a lot of company. And I hope you read this article thoroughly, because I want to share with you some steps you can take now. These steps may or may not prevent your lay-off, but they can help you be prepared for the future, and to move through each day with confidence.
The first thing I’m going to suggest is that you believe in yourself. As odd as this may sound, there are a good number of people today who don’t truly believe they have talents and skills that can either help them hold the position they have, or to be prepared to step promptly into a new position. People who see themselves as too old, too young, too quiet, too gregarious, too “average”….and the list goes on. Are you one of them? If so, today is the day to begin to view yourself differently. Today, you can put together a plan that allows you to hold your head up and know that…no matter what…you will succeed.
I’m not going to tell you that you have to completely change yourself…although you may choose to. What I am going to suggest is that if you’re willing to do these five things, you can stop worrying…and start living.
- Make a greater contribution. What contribution do you make to your company’s bottom line and what steps can you take to increase that contribution? Look hard at what you and/or your team do to make the company a success. Do some brainstorming…is there one thing…small or large..that might make a big difference? If so, get the ball rolling to implement it. Sure, lots of ideas get turned down, but not all. Companies today are much more interested in hearing the innovative ideas that might bring in a little more revenue or more new customers. And it tells your company you’re interested in their success as well as your own.
- Assess your talents. What talents do you have that are transferable…both within the company and outside it? Go through all of your performance reviews. What talents do you have that have been particularly noticed? Do you have great people skills, with the ability to get more and better performance from those you supervise? Do you have analytical skills that have allowed you to repeatedly find solutions to technical problems that have eluded others? Or maybe you’ve always gotten rave reviews for your punctuality and attention to detail. Whatever talents you have, now is the time to look at all of the talents you possess and put them together into a resume. It’s also the time to look at the job market within your company, or within your field outside the company where your skills can be used.
- Start networking. Not tomorrow…today. It’s always easier to find a job while you have one. It’s as true today as it has ever been. Do you research…what companies are looking for people with your skill set? Check with friends in other companies or ask your friends to discreetly inquire with their associates about what job opportunities may be available. Maybe you don’t have to leave…maybe you’re really secure right where you are. Knowing there are other possibilities…whether you take advantage of them or not…however, will bolster your confidence. When you’re confident, you will contribute more because you can focus on the task at hand instead of worrying about what might happen.
- Prepare to start your own business. If there’s something you’ve always loved doing, and thought you could make money at it, but just didn’t have enough confidence to start, today’s the day. Put together a business plan, talk to a lawyer and financial planner, and consider the possibilities. Do lots of research…the Internet has tons of free information…and find a niche that suits your skill set and has an unfilled need. Many entrepreneurs have been very successful with online businesses with very little…if any…investment capital.
- Save a minimum of six months income. This may be the hardest thing to do for many people in today’s economy. You may have to make a few sacrifices…no new car this year…no boat…no extra toys. It will be worth it, though, if you have enough savings that you don’t feel…and look…desperate in your new career search. Not worrying about whether you have enough money for next month’s mortgage, or rent or groceries, will allow you to focus on what you need to do to succeed in your new life.
Start today. Take one step at a time to prepare yourself for a new and better future.