There has been much discussion this summer about whether the U.S. is in a recession or not. This has raised concerns about possible layoffs. FlexJobs’ Career Pulse 2022 Survey found that 73% of respondents cited concerns about a recession impacting their career decisions. However, we do not want you to panic. Regardless of what happens, you have more control over your career than you might think.
We help professionals like you every day and we are encouraging our clients to be prepared for possible layoffs; not to panic. In fact, there are several things you can put in place now to be ready for any changes to your career.
Review and negotiate your severance. When was the last time you reviewed your employee contract? Pull it out and review the terms and fine print of what your pay and benefits are if you are laid off. If you are unclear about your terms, ask the HR department. Does the current agreement meet your financial needs? Do some research online or with your network to find out what other companies offer for severance.
Remember that severance can include other things besides money. It can also include paid time off, stock options, insurance benefits, etc. Determine what amount and components you would like to negotiate for based on how long you have been with the organization. And remember, you don’t have to wait until your annual performance review or actually being laid off to negotiate this.
Update your marketing materials. Your marketing materials include your resume, cover letter, portfolio, personal website, and LinkedIn profile. We recommend making sure all of these are up to date with recent accomplishments, recommendations, and client kudos.
Another element of your marketing materials is your list of references. This list tends to get overlooked by professionals, but we recommend reviewing it regularly when you review your other documents and materials. Making sure these materials are up to date can help you be ready to move quickly in the event of a layoff.
Research freelancing options. If you think that layoffs could be a real possibility in your industry, it can help you to be prepared if you research your freelancing options in advance. This will help you be one step ahead. What websites are reputable and have worthwhile options for your job and industry? Can you mostly set up a profile now in case you need to use it? Make quiet inquiries in your network to see if they know of anyone who might be in need of freelance work.
Remain positive. While the possibility of losing your job can be scary, view it as an opportunity. Stay current on industry trends, acquire a new skill, and be ready to act on open job listings.
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