Career protection differs from the traditional advice to work harder at your job in hopes of avoiding a layoff come recession time. Rather than trying to make themselves indispensable in their current roles, career protectors look outside their companies and quietly begin the search for their next jobs. prior to they absolutely have to.
So what does that look like in practice? Fisher recommends three key steps. First, take stock of your skills and work to develop the skills you’d need to land your next great job, noting that “40% of companies on LinkedIn globally explicitly rely on skills to find the right candidate” . So make sure your skills are also highlighted on your resume and professional profiles.
Second, she suggests staying connected to your network, because you never know who might be looking to hire someone like you for a great new position. And finally, make a plan for the next steps you want to take in your career.
Others advocate career cushioning by actively applying for new jobs, even if you’re happy in your current position. For example, kate pozeznikQuirk CEO, recently shared that she regularly applies for jobs despite owning a business. She explains: “Given mass layoffs, economic uncertainty, and the growing number of dissatisfied employees, it’s critical to be prepared for any eventuality. I know it sucks to hear that, but it’s reality. As a business owner, I’m not immune to the market fluctuations. That’s one of the reasons I apply for jobs and take interviews.”
Of course, we all know that applying for a job is easier said than done. So people like Khadyajah JenkinsTechnical Talent Scout at Adobe, are sharing tips that have helped them overcome recent job searches. In a viral LinkedIn post, Jenkins says that on her last job search, she created three different versions of her resume, then tailored them to the roles he applied for.
And he also shared how he searched for companies known for treating employees well, writing: “Look at the Forbes 500 list and the list of best places to work. She wasn’t going to go from one bad workplace to another. (I’ve suffered ENOUGH).”
Lastly, you stood out in your search by sending notes to recruiters, directors, and hiring managers to show your interest in a new position. “LinkedIn Premium gives you 80-100 connections. I made a note and sent connections every Sunday.” While this strategy didn’t always yield as many responses, he says the ones she did hear about usually led to interviews.
But applying for a job is only half the battle: You also need to be able to interview well. Adobe Talent Partner Justin Scott recently shared the interview tips that helped him bounce back after a layoff, and it’s great advice for anyone who’s also damping his career.
First, he says that preparation is key. “Be able to tell stories with information: Don’t just walk in with your resume and think you’re going to pull out everything you’ve done on a whim. Practice talking about your experiences with a friend.” Remember, even though some lucky people make it seem second nature, interviewing is a skill, so the more you practice, the better you can become.
Scott also suggests preparing data-driven responses to common interview questions to help you show the value you brought to your previous roles. “Find the data points and write down at least five examples. What was the situation, how did you notice it, what did he do to work with others to change it, and what was the result?”
Ultimately, career protection is about understanding that your current job won’t last forever. The days of spending your entire career at the same company are long gone, so why not get ahead of the game by planning for things to change?
Now I’m curious: are you doing anything to cushion your career or prepare for a recession? Tell me in the comments!