By Gerald Walsh ©
There are certain telltale signs your job (or your employment) may be eliminated.
Perhaps you are being given fewer responsibilities or you are no longer invited to important meetings. Perhaps your colleagues and boss are avoiding you or you can tell your company is experiencing financial troubles. Perhaps you had an unfavourable performance review or you see someone with similar skills to you has been hired.
I don’t want you to become paranoid—but you should be prepared just in case your job is eliminated.
Here is a checklist of 20 things to determine if you are ready:
1. Are you clear in your own mind, and can you describe to someone else, the sort of job you would be looking for?
2. Do you have money set aside, or could you trim your family budget, so you could stay afloat for three or even six months while you looked for another job?
3. Are your skills up-to-date and marketable? Might this be the time to do some additional training?
4. If somebody asked you how your skills could be transferred to another job or industry, could you answer that question?
5. Can you describe the type of organization you would like to work for?
6. Is your resume up-to-date, including your current job?
7. Do you know how to write a cover letter that clearly conveys how you are qualified for a particular job?
8. Do you have a list of references, including their up-to-date contact information, ready to go?
9. Do you have an established social media presence, particularly with LinkedIn and Twitter, and do you actively participate with discussions and posts?
10. Do you have a well-developed network of contacts that you could immediately tap into?
11. Are you already a member of any professional or business associations to help with your networking?
12. Are you familiar with online job boards and how they work?
13. Do you know the recruiters in your area and their particular fields of expertise?
14. Would you be comfortable making cold calls to employers you might like to work for but may not know?
15. Are your interviewing skills well-polished? Are you prepared to answer difficult interview questions?
16. Do you know the technique for making a strong and favourable first impression in an interview?
17. Do you know the types of questions you can ask in an interview and the ones that will most impress the interviewer?
18. Can you confidently state your salary expectations and support this with credible external research for comparison?
19. Do you exercise regularly and live a healthy lifestyle? Are there other personal habits you can develop to help you through a stressful and perhaps prolonged job search.
20. And lastly, do you look professional? Is your wardrobe and overall appearance appropriate for your age and industry?
Final Thought: You may be familiar with the saying: “Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.” This applies in career management. So, be honest, if today was your last day of employment, would you be ready?
To share your thoughts on this blog post, please write me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Gerald Walsh is an executive recruiter, career coach, public speaker and author. He is the author of “PINNACLE: How to Land the Right Job and Find Fulfillment in Your Career.” You can follow Gerry on Twitter @@Gerald_Walsh