Creating a Safety Blanket in Case of a Lay-Off

by Stacy Francis, CFP®, CDFA

I was recently on the Today Show talking about how to recession proof your finances when facing a layoff. Not the most upbeat interview. Not only is NBC covering this story but watching the evening news last night was depressing to say the least. It was all about lay-offs, a dwindling economy, and people losing their homes. As I am not the only one watching the news, many of my clients have been asking lately if there’s anything they can do to create a safety blanket, just in case the lay-off nightmare becomes a reality for them. Here’s my advice:

  1. If you haven’t already, create an emergency account with enough cash to keep you afloat for six months. This is advisable even in the best of economies — but now more than ever. Give yourself plenty of room to get back on your feet, should disaster strike.
  2. Network. Even if you’re not actively seeking a new job, it never hurts to have the right contacts. Hand out business cards, stay in touch, and half your job hunt will be done already, should your company let you go.
  3. Don’t get stuck in a rut. The fact that you’ve had the same job for years and years so you’re excellent at it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take steps to boost your value on the job market. Sign up for a class, ask your boss if you can manage a new type of project, or learn that new software. Not only will your boss be impressed and work harder to keep you around, but the skills could score you both a higher salary and a shorter job search time if you do end up on the market. 

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