Staying employed during and after crisis and adverse events such as the Corona Virus (COVID19) can be quite daunting given that the era in which we live is energized by an increasingly dominant social media and technological system.
Here's a brief background
The 20th century delivered it’s share of devastating man-made and natural disasters. Once these situations fizzled out, people returned to work and life gradually returned to ‘normal’. Media and communication through the 1990s was expanding but aside from newspapers, analogue powered television, telephone (Land lines) and Radio, e-mail was the only social media source. The 21st century dawned and with it came globalization driven by digital technology a spiraling internet which opened up pathways to untapped markets, 24/7 communication and access to human resources.
According to https://www.statista.com/markets/424/topic/540/social-media-user-generated-content/ between 2005 and 2019, approximately 85% of the population in developed countries has internet access. According to a We Are Social online publication over 4 billion of the 7.6 billion people in the world have internet access and the average internet user spends over 6 hours per day on an internet powered device according to an https://www.globalwebindex.com/ report.
Many will look at these stats and say wow progress! You might be excited about the avenues for communication and for connecting with family and friends abroad. But, as we are discussing employment during the time of a growing pandemic, how might employers view this? Further, if you were an employer, how could you leverage this knowledge especially at a time in when shareholders get the lion’s share of company profits? Additionally, which employers are most likely to profit significantly by exploiting this crisis given that staff and clients are at home?
Perhaps it is time for you to start thinking like a business owner.
What is your employer or boss be thinking during this period of economic downturn? Answer the following questions:
Might they be evaluating staff credentials and the value that each staff member delivers?
Choose Yes or No?
If this crisis were to drag on a couple months, what does your future in the company look like?
My Job is secure; I am not sure; I probably will be laid off.
As you ponder the two previous questions, please consider the following: What is the employer’s bottom line?
Profits Staff The competition
Keep your options open.
Now that you have figured out what the employer might be thinking what is your next course of action? Here is where the career coach and workforce professional in me says: keep your options open. Now is the perfect time to explore other employment opportunities. This point is being emphasized not to scare, but to make readers aware. As this COVID 19 pandemic goes on, businesses - especially the retail market - are going to struggle to get patrons in their doors. Thus, business owners are looking for alternative strategies to secure their bottom line. And, what do they know? The majority of their patrons are at home on a social media device, perhaps bored out of their minds.
We know the impact of a popup on the computer. It is designed to get your attention and for a bored individual, maybe this is worth checking out. Not everyone will but a few will click on it and before you know it they are shopping online… just as the employer had hoped. Where does that leave your position if you would normally be working on the floor? I will state it in two words: At Risk.
What is your Status (not rank) in the company?
Now that you are aware that the internet could replace your position ask yourself: What must I do to ensure that I remain an asset to my employer? Following are a couple suggestions. This is the point in time when you turn adversity into opportunity.
First and foremost, assess your abilities.
WRITE DOWN / Key in your credentials, skills, other talent that you posess.
Now ask yourself: if my company were to become an online business will the skills I have be sufficient to keep me employed? Yes or No!
Please do not allow a yes response to steer you into complacency. Rather, use the time at your disposal to broaden your knowledge.
A ‘no’ response is warning sign that must be treated as a call to action. Time for another self-assessment:
What skills am I lacking? How can I gain the skills I need?
Nine actions that can keep you motivated during this COVID 19 crisis
Whether your colleagues think highly of you or not may have no bearing on the bosses decision if they decide that your position is no longer relevant during this crisis. But you must be prepared for every scenario in the event that there is a Reduction in Force (RIF). Here are some recommended action steps. Use this time away from the workplace to:
Depending on your role or industry, you may still be reporting for work on a daily basis. You may also be working from home. Whatever your locale, this is a time when you MUST pay attention to the office buzz. The last thing you need is a surprise notification that the company is cutting staff and you are on the chopping block.
Do you have children in school?
When you are a parent with school age children, it is imperative that you have plans in place so that you will not miss work if the classes are cancelled for an extended period. This might be a time to discreetly get a feel for the bosses view of you working from home. However, if your position does not lend itself to this option have secure alternatives for childcare.
Remain relevant and competitive
This blog is not an expression of doom and gloom, nor is it intended to instill fear. Rather, it is hoped that the information will help you to plan and equip yourself for whatever turn that the economy might take. Employers are reviewing their next move and it is vital that you have a well- organized alternative also. The internet is a wildcard and you must take the necessary actions to remain a relevant competitor in order to secure the future of your employment.
Welcome! My name is Carl Edgecombe. I am a Career Services professional with over 12 years experience as a Workforce Trainer, Federal Résumé Writer, Career Coach, Public Speaker, Career Educator, Jobseeker Advocate, and Author of "Life Is Not All About Work", now on Amazon. As an experienced practitioner, I successfully equip diverse populations of jobseekers, adult learners, and career changers. With my proven abilities to motivate others and knowledge of employment trends, I provide realistic and practical approaches to educate clients of all ages and stages for their transition from the crossroads to university or the workforce. I am passionate about helping jobseekers desirous of securing a position in our shrinking global marketplace. Thus, I encourage clients to diversify their arsenal so they can showcase applicable skills and talent that are in demand given an expanding technological landscape. Now, "Let's Talk Career".