One of the most overlooked areas of personal finance is career planning. Career planning is absolutely essential to the personal finance arena because it is the area that provides you with the bulk of your income. There was a time that you would get a job and keep it for your entire working life. This is no longer the case. With companies laying off left and right, you need to do everything possible to protect your income.
Here are a few strategies that you can take to be proactive in the event of a layoff. Start making contacts now
Too many individuals wait until they have been laid off to start making career contacts. That is too late. The time to network is while you still have a job. Start attending professional functions and join professional organizations to network with people in your own field. Start schmoozing individuals in management and human resources personnel because they are in position to make the hiring decisions. You never know if your old boss or supervisor will be the one to help you land a new job.
Revise the resume
If you notice that sales are slacking or layoffs are taking place at your company then you need to start revising the resume. Start updating your resume by listing your most recent job duties and dropping irrelevant jobs that you may have had back during the college years. List relevant skills and training as well as any awards or recognition you have received from your employer. If your resume is light on job duties then start volunteering for additional responsibilities that would look good to a future employer. Also, create a list of five recent business contacts that you have made that can provide you with a glowing reference.
Shop your resume now
The best time to look for a new job is while you already have a job. It is getting increasingly difficult to find employment with the average person being out of work for several months before finding a new job. Employers are much more likely to hire you coming directly from a job then after having gone without work for a long time period. Your best bet is to start looking for a job at least six months before leaving your current employer. This will improve your chances of finding the perfect job and will keep you from jumping at the first offer.
Mark Riddix is the founder and president of New Horizons Financial Management, an independent investment advisory firm that provides personalized investing and asset management consulting. Mark is a regular contributor to Seeking Alpha and has written financial columns for Baltimore and Washington, D.C. area newspapers. Mark publishes his own financial blog, BuylikeBuffett.com and has written the book Your Financial Playbook.