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Job security at stake

Question :

I've heard through the grapevine that we're downsizing and I'm really worried about my job. I do try to prove my value and am putting in extra hours to show management I'm indispensable. I wonder if this will help or should I look for another job. Trouble is, I don't have time to look due to the long work hours and I'm so tired after. Also, I can't afford to take leave for any interviews. It's been so long since I was in the job market. Any guidance for my situation is much appreciated.   

Posted by Worried on Thursday, 19 Jun 2014

Comments :

Dear Worried,

Your concerns are understandable and I’ll address in particular the viability of the company, and your lack of up to date knowledge and experience around finding a new job.

I strongly recommend that you continue with your conscientious and hardworking approach. When they downsize, companies make decisions on which employees stay and which go on a variety of factors but one of those factors is often how committed and capable an employee is. So, whilst it may not prevent you from being made redundant it will certainly reduce the likelihood of that happening. However, whatever the financial health of your employer I would recommend that you ensure your work skills and capability are always up to date because if they are then you will remain marketable to, and in demand, by other employers. It is better to be employable than to be employed because if you should be made redundant by your company, you can then find another job with minimum difficulty.

This first involves you becoming job ready by spending time reviewing and assessing yourself and your portfolio of knowledge skills and experience. What are your strengths and weaknesses? What do you enjoy and not enjoy doing at work. What special responsibilities or achievements do you have? What is special or unique about you at work compared to your colleagues and other potential job seekers in the market? You should enlist the help of your friends and family as well as trusted colleagues, and ideally a current or former manager to give you their feedback and opinions on your capability.

In addition, if you were to move to another company, what would you like your position in that company to be? Do you have the necessary knowledge skills and experience to undertake that job? If you do, then you are in good shape. If you don’t then you need to focus on acquiring or developing those skills and experience in your current role in your current company if you can. You may also need to undertake additional training courses or attend relevant seminars.

The other aspect of being job ready involves the practical aspects surrounding your job search. You already have a good understanding of who you are and the extent of your capability, and you now need to translate this knowledge into a resume you can use for applying to other jobs if you need to and then hone into your interview techniques.

Good luck with your current situation and future career.

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