Career Advice: 10 Steps To Protect Your Career In Tough Times
by Ramon Greenwood
It's an unsettling fact: we are in one of the worst economic downturns since the Great Depression. Layoffs are being felt across the board. Indicators suggest that more are yet to come before a turn-around begins.
Better to face reality than to hide our heads in the sand expecting a miracle. Now's the time to focus on recession-proofing your job so as to move forward on your career path
One school of thought holds that it is better to keep a low profile with the hope that you'll be overlooked when the man with the axe comes around. That's bad career coaching. Truth is, if you aren't making a noticeable contribution to the success of your employer and getting proper credit for your accomplishments, you will be an easy target.
Laying off someone who is quiet is much easier than pink-slipping the person who works hard and has earned visibility and creditability.
Ten-Step Action Plan For Career Success
Here are 10 steps you can take, beginning now, to protect and advance toward your career goals in these tough times.
1. Know what's going on with your job, your department, your employer. Stay in the loop, but avoid the fear-mongers. Lunch and take coffee breaks with associates. Carefully study memos from the boss. Read trade journals.
2. Learn new skills that are in demand in the emerging world of work.
3. Perform above and beyond expectations. Work hard and be seen as working hard.
4. Work to make your boss look good.
5. Don't complain when you are asked to come in early and stay late. Be ready to take on extra work. Volunteer for special assignments. Suggest ways to improve your performance and that of your department.
6. Document your accomplishments. Make sure your employer is aware of your good work.
7. Associate yourself with your associates who bring an up-beat, can-do attitude to work.
8. Be prepared to make a move if you are laid off. Keep up your contacts inside your organization and in your field of work. Learn new skills. Update your resume.
9. Maintain a healthy, positive life style at home and at work.
10. Hang in there. Despite the dark clouds, these trying times will pass. In the meantime, keep your eye on the career path that will lead you to success.
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