Recession proofing your career

Aug 18, 2011

With 8.5% unemployment and so many professionals insecure about keeping their jobs, it is evident how little training and awareness we possess in career planning. The media will only showcase those who are struggling, so those who build an arsenal of marketability for easy transition during economic downturns don’t secure much celebrity. Whether job hunting or currently employed, it is never too early or too late to configure your recession proofing plan. 

Here is several tips successful careerists use:

  • Certifications/Specialized Training. Whether you reactivate your CPA license, obtain your MBA or simply take continuing education, you can remain competitive with other job seekers should you be put in search mode. Today’s employers can be more selective than ever and it is important to continue to add to your credentials. You will also add substantial value in the eyes of your current employer.

  • Professional Associations. Affiliation with others in your profession keeps you visible. If you wait to network until you need something, you’ve waited too long. The more active you are in your industry, the further ahead you’ll be when being on your colleagues’ radar becomes important.

  • On the Job. There are numerous opportunities to increase your market value to your current employer. The more diversified your responsibilities, the more reason there will be to keep you as a member of the team. Volunteer to learn new things, take on additional responsibilities, or work over-time. No one is indispensable but bosses know which employees they can regularly depend on. 

Immediately take an inventory of the functional and intellectual value you bring to the table. Practice presenting these in the most positive light, should you need to demonstrate them to a prospective employer. Next, make a list of attributes or skills you don’t currently possess that are critical to increasing your ultimate resale value.

Wise career planners know that, while the best of jobs may evaporate, no one can ever take away the experience equity they have gained.

Janice Worthington is the president of Worthington Career Services, a resume and job search consulting firm that provides career coaching at all levels. Janice will be working with The Ohio Society as a career coach to the membership, including regular columns in the Society’s electronic publications.