If we have learned anything, the economy is always changing. The current economic conditions seem like they are holding steady, but there are a lot of people that are still on the verge of losing their jobs. In 2008, there were over 1 million jobs lost. To prevent yourself from landing in the unemployment category, consider getting a side job you can do at home.
There are warning signs you can pick up on to help you determine if you may be losing your job:
- The company announces a hiring freeze and announces there will be cut-backs on extra spending. If your company announces the cancellation of Christmas bonuses or other things, start working harder to show your value to the company.
- New processes start happening in regards to vacation and internal processes. The new rules will help a company weed out the weaker employees.
- Corporate earnings have been declining for a quarter or more. If the company stock has been falling, watch for lay-offs to start happening.
- A company merger has occurred, eliminating the need for individual jobs. If one or more people are competing for your job, start working harder to show the company how much they need you.
- Watch economic trends and geographical trends that indicate change is on the way. Show the company you can adapt to new trends so they keep you in the top running for your position.
If you think there is a chance you may be losing your job, you need to take a few measures to prepare:
Begin by reviewing your benefits. Your 401(k) is the biggest thing you need to consider. If your 401(k) is invested in your companies stock, see if you can re-allocate it, especially if the company is at risk for closing their doors. If you participate in a profit sharing program that is invested in company stock, again you need to try and make changes to your portfolio. The last thing you want is to lose your hard-earned retirement money to a company that is going under.
What does your saving account currently look like? Are you getting the right returns? You need to select a good savings account to help you manage your money and ensure you are getting money back for what you are investing. You do need to make sure you always have at least 6 months set aside to ensure you are safe and have money to fall back upon.
Not only is an online savings account a great place to ensure you are growing money, set aside funds in your CD Account. CD Accounts allow for excellent opportunities to grow money. With interest rates on the rise, we could easily see savings rates back into the upper 7 percentile region. Compare current CD rates here to find the best CD account for your needs.
Starting the Job Search
The next step you need to take is to copy all your phone numbers and addresses of any contacts you have in the office and other business associates you think may be able to help you. Having all these numbers handy will help you create a good network of people that can help you find a new job. Ask your co-workers to be a reference for you and return the favor for them. Anything you can do to build your network will help you find a new job quickly. Make sure to keep in touch with those individuals since they may end up helping you build your new career in the future.
It is also time to start copying your computer files that you may need for your next job. If you have a resume or any documents that have helped you succeed, obtain a copy of them and get a copy of everything on your computer that is your personal information. Start clearing out those personal files from the server now because once the company tells you that you have been let go; you won’t have time to clear off your computer.
If you catch word of the company going under or company cut-backs, quietly start removing personal items and other things from your office. Samples of your work, awards, certificates, personal software purchases, and copies of your reviews all need to go home with you. Do not take home any company property such as financial information, company lists and other things. Even though the company may be going out of business, you may end up in serious trouble if you steal their property.
Another thing to try and get a hold of is your personnel file. You may not be able to get a copy of your file, but it never hurts to ask. A personnel file will include information about your job performance, timeliness, and other things that may help you when you are on the next job interview. On average, Americans spend about 70% of their waking hours, Monday through Friday, on work-related things. Your job is a huge part of your life and any change to that lifestyle can be a huge blow to your self-esteem and confidence level. By preparing before you lose the job, you will at least have something prepared to help you find the new job.
Unemployment is available to qualified individuals that have been laid-off so you should check with your local unemployment office to see if they can help you fill the gaps while you look for a new job.
The dreaded day is upon you when you see your co-workers get called into the boss’s office and eventually your number is up. If the news is given to you that you have been let go, you need to think clearly and avoid becoming irrational. Always leave the office gracefully, even if security guards accompany you outside. Prepare yourself to take the company “walk of shame” with dignity and keep your head held high. Making a big scene in the office will spread to your network like wildfire and can severely damage your chances at landing a new job fast. Even though you are escorted out of the office, don’t take it personally, it is just a standard company policy.
While unemployment may seem like the last resort, you shouldn’t feel bad about taking unemployment, especially in a tough job market. Depending upon the state you live in, you can file for unemployment via telephone. Filing for unemployment is quick and the company has set aside funds to pay for this. The U.S. Department of Labor has published guidelines for unemployment benefits and they can help anyone that has questions about unemployment benefits. Generally unemployment depends on your last payment from the company, including severance pay. If the company gave you severance pay in one lump sum, divide that into monthly increments of your salary rate to help you determine when you are eligible for unemployment.
Searching for a new job can be tax deductible. The IRS has set certain guidelines for job seekers and they are willing to allow qualified tax payers to write off a lot of your job search. Even if you do not get a new job, you can write off any expenses you incurred while you were looking for a new job. Any money you spend on resume writing or professional resume services, printing documents, faxing documents, mailing your resume, driving to job interviews, and using job hunting companies can all qualify as a tax write off.
One of the best ways to start seeking a new job is to attend job fairs. Job fairs will allow you expand your network and possibly find a new job. Call your personal and business contacts and find out if they know of any job openings with their company or other firms. Your network is your best source to help you find a new job quickly and these individuals will help you obtain a job interview, especially if they are well-respected within the company. When you are in the job interview, make sure to tell the interviewer that you were laid off due to company cut-backs or company bankruptcy. You don’t want the interviewer to think you have been fired for other reasons.
Starting a Side Job
If you want to start your own company, or you have a great idea for an at-home job, you need to have a good credit card processing system. Some people look for free tools like Paypal as you can manage your money and submit payments. Follow the right legal process if you do choose to start your own business to start earning money from home.
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