With tech layoffs making headlines and economists still predicting a recession on the horizon, it’s no surprise that many people are rethinking their budgets and careers right now. And on LinkedIn, people are talking about something called “career amortization.”
LinkedIn career expert Catherine Fisher defines it this way in her newsletter: “Career cushioning takes steps to keep your options open and cushion whatever comes next in the economy and job market. Consider Use it as an insurance policy to set you up for success.”
Career depreciation differs from the traditional advice of working very hard at your job in the hope of avoiding a layoff during a recession. Instead of trying to make themselves indispensable in their current roles, Career Cushions look outside their company and quietly start looking for their next job. before they absolutely must.
So what does this look like in practice? Fisher recommends three key steps. First, take stock of your skills and work to develop the missing skills you need to land your next great job, pointing out that “40% of companies on LinkedIn globally rely explicitly on skills to find the right candidate. So make sure your skills are also highlighted on your CV and professional profiles.
Second, she suggests staying in touch with your network, because you never know who might be looking to hire someone like you for a great new role. And finally, make a plan for the next steps you want to take in your career.
Others argue for career cushioning by actively applying for new jobs, even if you’re happy with your current position. For example, Kate Pozeznik, CEO of Quirk, recently said that she regularly applies for jobs despite being a business owner herself. She explains: “Given the massive layoffs, economic uncertainty and growing number of dissatisfied employees, it is essential to be prepared for all eventualities. I know it sucks to hear that, but it’s the reality. As a business owner, I’m not immune to market fluctuations either. It’s one of the reasons I apply for jobs and interview.
Of course, we all know that applying for a job is easier said than done. So people like Khadyajah Jenkins, technical talent scout at Adobe, share tips that have helped them succeed in their recent job searches. In a viral LinkedIn post, Jenkins says that during her last job search, she created three different versions of her resume and then tailored them to the roles she applied for.
And she also shared how she researched companies known to treat employees well, writing, “Look at the Forbes 500 list and the list of best places to work. I wasn’t going to go from a bad workplace to another. (I’ve suffered ENOUGH).”
Finally, she stood out in her search by sending notes to recruiters, directors and hiring managers to show her interest in a new role. “LinkedIn premium gives you 80-100 connections. I wrote a note and sent connections every Sunday.” While this strategy hasn’t always yielded as many responses, she says the ones she’s heard about have usually led to interviews.
But applying for a job is only half the battle – you also need to be able to interview well. Recently, Justin Scott, Talent Partner at Adobe, shared the interview tips that helped him bounce back from a layoff, and it’s great advice for anyone who is also cushioning their careers.
First, he says preparation is key. “Be able to tell stories with information – don’t just go into your resume thinking you’re going to pick up on everything you’ve done on a whim. Practice talking about your experiences with a friend .” Remember that while some lucky people make it seem like it comes naturally, maintenance is a skill – so the more you practice, the better you can become.
Scott also suggests preparing data-driven answers to common interview questions to help you show the value you’ve brought in your previous roles. “Find the data points and write down at least five examples. What was the situation, how did you notice it, what did you do to work with others to change it, and what was the outcome?”
Ultimately, career amortization is about understanding that your current job won’t last forever. The days of spending your entire career with the same company are long gone, so why not get a head start by planning for things to change?
Now I’m curious – are you doing anything to cushion your career or prepare for a recession? Tell me about it in the comments!
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