To many people it feels like the economy is constricting and they are in jeopardy of losing their jobs. Certainly, if you are from a state like Michigan you might feel this squeeze more than most. Like many others, you may also feel that you are powerless to control what happens to you, but this is not the case. Each of us has the ability to direct our destiny from calamity even if that control feels haphazard at times.
Maintaining gainful employment and financial health requires some foresight and planning. Without putting the proper amount of energy and effort into your financial protection it is doubtful you will be able to do much to avoid being laid-off. Your strength comes from your marketability, your organizational worth and your financial well being.
Marketability refers to your overall employability and worth to companies in the general field. In order words, how likely will another company hire you? For example, if your skills are very specialized as a paper mill mechanic you may have difficulty finding the same pay and employment at another organization. It is true that you might find employment as a mechanic somewhere but since your skills are not directly adaptable you may be making less. However, if you were an accountant the same skills can be used any other company.
This marketability is important when choosing your college degree or the path you desire your career to go in. When making critical decisions concerning your career try and think about future opportunities. Will this choice give me more opportunities? Don’t be as concerned about pay as you do about expanding your skills and increasing your marketability.
Education also has the ability to increase your marketability. It wasn’t that long ago that employers would hire a manager with a high school degree and many years of experience. This is almost unheard of in today’s market. A simple scan of job boards shows that most management jobs require at least a bachelor’s degree and in many cases a master’s degree. Education is a wonderful benefit if you have some years to capitalize on it after you graduate.
The second part of maintaining employment is to increase your organizational worth. Companies will usually get ride of the least skilled people they can first and then move onto the most skilled as needed. Therefore, it is important to make yourself indispensable to the company. You can do this by learning other jobs besides your own, which allows your employer to find additional work for you if needed. For example, if you work as a human resource representative it may make sense to learn payroll, training and benefits. As organizations are cutting heads they might offer you the chance to have a combined roll.
Financial well-being is about having multiple streams of income and a healthy investment/savings plan. It is not as big a deal to lose your 50K a year job if you are making another 30K from a part-time business and have 80K in your liquid bank account then if you have no investment/savings and no other income. A person with additional streams of income can start focusing on those streams when their company is taking a nose dive. In such a situation, being laid-off may actually force you focus on your business and thereby create a better life for yourself in the long-run.
The problem is with increasing your marketability, your organizational worth and your financial health is the amount of energy these fields require. Many of us can’t wake up in the morning mow our lawns. How are we going to spend countless hours on self-improvement? One must enjoy this improvement time the same as they may enjoy a good movie or watching a sporting event. It should become part of their lifestyle, the way they think and how they approach future issues. Avoiding a lay-off and advancing in your career requires a diligence that many of us don’t have. Use other’s laziness to your advantage.