Wise careerists recognize and deal with the fact that job security is a thing of the past. They keep their antenna on alert for signs that their jobs may be in danger. They have stand-by plans to act if they get the pink slip.
That’s common sense at work for career success.
There are obvious danger signals such as mediocre or worse performance ratings. Business is falling off for your employer. Rumors are flying that the company is in trouble. Employees are being laid off. Another company acquires your employer. A number of managers have jumped ship.
Alarm Bells Are Sounding
There are more subtle, but no less meaningful, alarm bells, according to Greg Gostanian, managing partner at ClearRock, an executive coaching and outplacement firm,
1. Your supervisor and other colleagues are not making direct eye contact with you as often as they once did. You are not invited to the coffee breaks. You are lunching alone.
2. You have failed to carry out the one or two most important tasks you were hired to do. Or those assignments are being eliminated or turned over to others
3. People in other departments know more about what is going on in your own area than you do.
4. You are no longer invited to meetings, consulted about plans, and are discouraged from joining professional associations and professional organizations. You are not copied on important messages.
Job Tip: Always Be Prepared If Things Turn Sour
Even if the warning bells are not sounding for you now, it pays to be prepared in case things turn sour. Put the positive power of negative thinking to work as you work toward your career goals.
1. Learn all you can about the state of business for your employer.
2. Keep your resume up-to-date. Maintain a file of your accomplishments and accolades.
3. Set aside enough money to sustain you until you can find another position.
4. Keep learning new skills so you will be abreast of the demands of an ever-changing job market.
5. Maintain contacts with key people who might need your talents. Be visible.
These five action steps will also serve your interests along your career path if the decision to seek a new job is totally yours.