Careers

Before your company stops loving YOU

Posted on | April 17, 2018 | No Comments

This is going to be a tough conversation. Provocative, disturbing, but necessary.

Imagine yourself going to work tomorrow. You are walking into your office building with energy, enthusiasm and excitement. You are making plans in your mind about the meetings you need to attend, the calls you need to make and the reports you need to present. You get past the revolving door, the turnstile, the lift lobby. You take the lift to your floor and you enter your office premises.

As you walk in, you realise the mood is sombre. Colleagues are speaking in hushed tones. The CEO has decided to restructure again. Many have been laid off. That’s sad. Then you realise you too are fired!

Do you say “Why me?” OR “What now?” OR “Oh! Well, I know what exactly to do next!”?

“RECESSION is when your neighbour loses his job. DEPRESSION is when you lose yours.” ― Ronald Reagan

Why do I bring this up? Recently, I have been meeting many talented people, who have been working for 10, 15, 20, 25 years, but never have a strategy for this eventuality. It is not IF, it is WHEN your company will stop loving you. You never know what plans your company has for you, unless you are in the know.

What if it happens to YOU? The sad fact is that many in senior positions are not able to get another role at the same income or stature. There are many holding senior level positions who have families to feed, kids to educate, aging parents to support and mortgages to pay, who can’t get a job unless they are willing to take jobs thats pay significantly less at a much junior level. This is not always a case of lack of suitable jobs, especially in big cities. This is largely because they haven’t been staying ready. What about you?

Here are three questions you need to consider now.

  • What do you plan to do when your company stops loving you?
  • If you are fired tomorrow, who is going to hire you at a better income and role?
  • Have you been staying ready?

Next Level Readiness is the mantra for sustainable leadership success.

“How can they do this to me? That’s my company’s fault!”…. NO!

You are never too BIG to be fired. During my leadership coaching sessions and public programs, I meet many talented people who still believe “My company will take care of me.” OR “My department is super important for our organisation.” OR “The project I am working on is cutting edge, there is no one else to execute it than ME!“.

Think about this. Even Steve Jobs was fired from the company he founded.

During “restructuring” entire departments are wiped out, projects are culled at a moment’s notice, hundred are laid off without mercy, as the company’s plans changes quarter to quarter.

What is going on? What can you do?

    “Love your job but don’t love your company, because you may not know when your company stops loving you.” ― Dr APJ Abdul Kalam

    Here are 7 things you need to reflect upon to stay ready, BEFORE your Company stops loving you.

    How well do you know your Team 1, 2, 3?

    By Team 1, I mean the team comprising of your peers at work. Team 2 is the team comprising of all your superiors(a.k.a. bosses). Team 3 is the team you manage. Raise your profile and build relationships with people who matter. There is not much point getting the admiration of people who can’t help you! The higher you are in the organisation, you could get easily carried away by the power and even by opportunistic sycophants, who make you feel good for their own good. Don’t allow yourself to fall into the ego trap.

    How well-known and well-connected are you in your industry?

    The higher you go, the harder you fall. You need to be known in your industry. Go out, meet people. Be seen and be known. Don’t shy away from industry conferences and opportunities to meet new people in your industry. Speaking at conferences is one easy way to be more visible. Being shy or introverted is no excuse anymore. Take help if you need to.

    Have you been helping others when they are in need?

    Many people are so disorganised and busy with the busyness of life that they do not spend time and effort helping others in need. These could be the very people you might need to turn to for help in the future. Make deep connections with people you meet. Nurture those relationships.

    What’s the best time to find your next job?

    The best time to find a job is when you already have one. If you ever become a jobless person looking for a job, you can become desperate and often be forced to settle for less. Remember, your severance pay doesn’t last for long and doesn’t replace the need for being meaningfully engaged. Don’t be the bird in the cage that’s well fed, but can’t find food by itself when let go.

    What’s your personal brand?

    What do others think about you, feel about you and perceive about you? How are you building, nurturing and advancing your personal brand and executive presence. Whether you realise it or not, you have a personal brand. Make sure it is one that favours you.

    How easy is it to replace you? Have you been waiting for someone to invest in you?

    Most salaried people will never invest in themselves. They expect their employer to train them and keep them relevant for the future. The fact is that the organisation is focussed on its own goals and how you can help achieve those. Retaining you is also a goal, till your utility drops. If you have to grow in a certain direction or achieve specific goals, you need to invest in yourselves. When was the last time you invested in your personal development? Are your current skills relevant for your company and industry and your next level? What new skills will make you more effective and keep you ready for the next level?Have you been asking for help? What can you do to increase the perceived value you bring to your organisation and future employers?

      If your company can replace an overpaid senior employee with two junior employees, they will.

      How well have you Recession-Proofed yourself?

      As mentioned in my recent interview on BBC, and in my previous posts, there are FIVE core skills that help you to stand out and fast track your career. These are skills you need to make yourself recession-proof.

      Call to Action: Reflect on what’s stopping you from getting to the next level of your career or profession. Raise your Confidence. Raise your Presence. Raise your Influence. Stay employable at the same level or next level. To stay ready for the next level of your career, visit NextLevelReady.com.

      Manoj Vasudevan is a Next Level Leadership Readiness expert, management consultant, and the World Champion of Public Speaking who helps executives and entrepreneurs to breakthrough to the Next Level of their career and life. Manoj is known for his expertise in simplifying complex topics into practical strategies. He is the CEO of Thought Expressions and holds an MBA from Imperial College, London. His books include the international bestseller Mastering Leadership The Mousetrap Way. He speaks at international conferences, multinational companies, universities, and around the world. As a coach, Manoj has proven track record in personal transformation and achieving leadership breakthroughs. CEOs, Senior Executives, UN Diplomats, Celebrities & Professionals from 27 nationalities have benefited from Manoj’s coaching and public programs.

      Please share this article with your network so that it reaches someone who will benefit!

      Originally published: Before your company stops loving YOU

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