Wednesday, February 1, 2017

4 Ways to Prepare for an Unexpected Layoff

It's an experience that we anticipate with dread: that call into our manager's office, letting us know that we're being let go. It usually doesn't make us feel better to know the circumstances, whether the company is down-sizing or eliminating a specific area. Our focus is on the immediate. What do I do now?

Fortunately, there are some ways you can prepare for this future possibility and reduce some of the sting of it.

Below are four ways you can prepare for an unexpected layoff:

1. Keep your resume and LinkedIn profile up to date. In the event of a sudden, unexpected layoff you'll be grateful that you've kept your resume up to date. It will decrease your concerns about preparing for the job hunt and will help you focus on job opportunities that are best suited to you and your strengths and skills. Be active on LinkedIn and let other know you are looking for new opportunities. Schedule time in your schedule every three months to tweak your resume and LinkedIn profile.

2. Stay engaged with your network. Be sure you're taking some time each week to stay connected with your colleagues--both in the office and those you know virtually or through conferences, or previous places of employment. Often these will be the first people you'll contact about work and job openings.

3. Be involved in a professional organization. Nearly every profession has some type of professional organization and associated conferences you can get involved with. Start now and make a point of having at least one conference you attend annually. Not only will you increase your knowledge base, and build your network, but professional organizations often provide resources and information for job seekers.

4. Contribute to a "rainy day" fund. Finally, prepare in advance to handle the financial storm of an unexpected layoff by regularly putting aside some money from your paycheck into a savings account. And be sure not to touch it! You'll be grateful it's there if the unexpected happens.

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