No storm lasts forever. That's just as true of financial storms as it is natural ones. However, in the midst of a storm, that knowledge may not offer much solace.
The news has been full of storm clouds. Among other indicators, unemployment is rising. There is one thing you can do to face challenges like this with confidence – prepare for it in advance by keeping your options open. Here are four ways to do that:
Insure that people see you doing what you do best. Is your job "outbound" so you're clearly visible to customers? If so, capitalize on that relationship. Ask them for a brief note about working with you. It will come in handy at your next evaluation or if you need to look for other work.
If your job doesn't expose you to anyone outside your company, then work on your visibility. Get involved in your industry. Look for conferences you can attend. Participate in forums and comment on blog posts about your industry. You might even consider starting your own blog to show off your expertise. Volunteer to work for your favorite non-profit.
There are many ways to do it. Get started right away if you’re not already doing it. And then do a little maintenance – reach out in some way – every day.
It's amazing how many people land a new job through a referral. It's also amazing how much business results from our networks.
So why do so many of us pay so little attention to our network until we really need it?
Do you participate in local opportunities? Is your company a member of the Chamber of Commerce? If so, do you attend Chamber functions? Are you a member of any local service clubs? These are great real world opportunities to build your network.
Are you on LinkedIn? What about Facebook and Twitter? Have you joined any industry-specific social networking sites? The contacts you make through these sites will be valuable now. They may prove invaluable should you be forced to make a change.
How about combining the virtual with the real? Have you registered on Meetup to find out about local events of interest to you? You’ll meet some fantastic people while growing your network at the same time.
It begins by positioning yourself. What makes you unique? How can you communicate that? What opportunities play to your core strengths?
Is your resume up-to-date? If not, there's no time like the present! For sample cover letters, resumes, job search and interviewing tips, check out Resume Help.
Building a Bridge Plan
What would you do if you were forced to change jobs? How would you pay your bills? Where would you look for a new job? Who would you contact for referrals? For what services would you pay? For example, would you hire a career coach?
As you prepare this plan, keep a couple of things in mind.
- You may spot some problems.
That's why you're doing this now. For instance, at what point might you need to find some part-time work or freelance work to pay the bills?
- Allow for some recovery time.
You're human. It will be emotional. But you'll feel much more confident having thought it through in advance. And you'll be able to keep your options open to find the right opportunity for you! That’s bigg success!
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Bigg success is life on your own terms. You are the entrepreneur of your own life. You can be taught some things about entrepreneuring; others you have to learn on your own. Please join us next time when we talk about which is which.
Until then, here’s to your bigg success!
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