10 years ago during the last recession, I got stuck. I was able to keep my job as a veteran TV news reporter, but I felt completely overwhelmed by change. The market was tanking. Media and technology were rapidly changing just as they are today.
That’s when I went on a journey that allowed me to pivot in my career; to change, to grow, to “Do The New”.
This might be a good time for YOU to do the same.
Now as a career coach and as someone who survived 40 years of TV news, here’s what I’m sharing with my students and professionals who are worried about keeping their jobs or finding a new one.
IF YOU ARE EMPLOYED AND LOVE YOUR JOB: DO MORE, NOT LESS:
- Help your organization re-imagine, reboot.
- Be open to change, adopt and learn new technology, virtual learning, communication and meeting skills.
- Volunteer for a committee, a project, anything extra to help.
Having survived many cutbacks and layoffs in my life, I learned only the indispensable survive in the worst of times.
IF YOU ARE EMPLOYED BUT HATE YOUR JOB, DON’T QUIT!
- Especially if you have health benefits, don’t quit
- Do your very best to keep your job while making plans to pivot
- Consider going back to school, or go online to learn new skills
- Gather your team: your friends, best mentors and advisors
If you don’t know what you want to do next, ask for their input:
- Stay in touch with your network. Talk to people who are doing something you might like to do next. Keep this networking on the “down low”. The goal is to keep your job until you have a new plan.
- Spruce up your resume and your LinkedIn.
- Figure out a financial plan to pivot. What will you need? More? Or, can you earn less to do something you love?
- Find new opportunities to learn and grow in the organization you are in now.
- Volunteer for anything that allows you to use different professional/leadership muscles or introduces you to new people in your organization.
This is not the time to make a leap or pivot unless you are forced to.
However, it is a good time to start doing new things and figuring out what it is that might be next for you. This can take some time and if you can wait out the Corona Virus to see how things shake out, that’s preferable.
YOU ARE LAID OFF, FIRED, FURLOUGHED, or a NEW JOB WAS PULLED OUT FROM UNDER YOU: NETWORK!!!
- Go to your network! Talk to the people who know you well, whose advice you trust.
- Get all of your professional materials reviewed: resume, LinkedIn, portfolio
- If you haven’t used LinkedIn before to network and find a job before, spend time on this. Take a class. This is a powerful job hunting tool. Learn how to use LinkedIn to network and apply for jobs, attract recruiters
- Get in touch with your college career center. Even if you graduated years ago, you may find your center is open and has resources for you
- Learn about applicant tracking systems and virtual interviewing
- Connect with college alumni online through LinkedIn and Facebook groups. Alumni help alumni.
- Talk to former employers, mentors, friends, anyone who knows your work and worth.
- Consider freelancing, project work, create “your own thing” if you can.
Use this time to consider a career pivot.
If you didn’t like your job anyway, maybe you are almost relieved. This might be the kick in the pants you needed to face your fears and make a move toward something new.
There will be new jobs and opportunities on the other side of this pandemic. The way we work and communicate is changing rapidly. Talk with a career professional.
Assess your strengths, your passions and your trusted network.
Regardless of what we do, we will all have to change now.
Don’t panic. Take a breath. Be open. Say YES to any opportunity to “Do The New”.
It’s possible something good, even something better could come out of this for you. Dare to re-imagine your life and career.