It’s tough out there for many industries, with mass layoffs at many big-name companies. The tech industry in particular has been hit hard, but no one could blame workers in other industries for feeling anxious. Regardless of why these layoffs happen or how frequently they occur, it’s good to have a plan in place should layoffs head your way.

Ideally, you won’t have to tangle with layoffs, but it’s not a bad idea to stay prepared. Forbes’ Caroline Castrillon outlined ten strategies to prepare for a possible layoff. We look at some of the most prudent and add our own insights.

Keep your files updated

It’s a good idea to periodically keep your resume and LinkedIn updated in general. This way, you’ll have a comprehensive list of your biggest accomplishments ready to go and they’ll be fresh in your mind. But if you fear layoffs are coming, it’s doubly important to do so to save you a step if you do need to quickly look for a job.

Caroline says to update your LinkedIn profile by updating your skills section, adding a headline, getting recommendations, crafting an engaging summary, and keeping your headshot and banner current. These are all easy steps to accomplish and can draw outside attention even if you aren’t currently looking for a new role.

Gather needed resources

While updating your resume and LinkedIn will save you a step in case a layoff happens, the following step is more time-sensitive. If you need copies of your performance reviews, work projects, or contact lists, make sure you obtain them (legally) before a layoff makes that difficult or impossible.

Network heavily

Networking should always be a two-way street—look to add value to your connections rather than focusing merely on what you can learn. If you’ve been diligent and sincere in your efforts, you’ll have an easier time utilizing your connections to find your next role.

LinkedIn’s Lincoln Murphy says to be subtle and strategic in your efforts. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket and find relevant groups that could be beneficial. Listen more than you talk, but don’t hesitate to ask questions. He adds that asking an insightful enough question will earn a response just because you took the time to be direct and show how much you value someone’s opinion.

“When a post gets put online and there’s 1,000 resumes for it in five minutes, it’s really hard to stand out. But if you can meet somebody at a company you want to work for and ask for a referral, you get put to the top of that pile.” –Andy Challenger

Consider future goals

Losing your job is never easy, but if layoffs do come your way, they could lead to opportunities you may not have considered. When layoffs are on the horizon, it’s worth reevaluating your career ambitions.

Caroline says that since many companies offer a severance package, a layoff is actually a good time to make a career change. That severance money gives you some cushion while you research a new path and pivot your resume to that new industry. You can use that time to dive into any classes or certifications you may need.

If you’re set on your current career path but you’re ready for your next steps, you can use this time to analyze that route too, according to Medium. These layoffs might give you more insight into the state of the industry and how rough that road will be. You can look into what roles are being harmed less by layoffs and what skills these roles require. Viewing these layoffs as a shake-up rather than a pure loss can help advance your career goals and keep you in a good state of mind.

Keep a positive mindset

It’s hard to stay positive during potential layoffs. Most of us need to work for a living, and the uncertainty can take a massive toll on your mental health. It’s okay to be concerned, but learning how to take control of your thought process and find ways to be functional will help you in the long run.

CNBC Make It’s Morgan Smith suggests writing down your anxious thoughts and what triggers them and then practicing positive reaffirmations. For example, you may be concerned because your team laid off some members. It’s important to note that that doesn’t mean you’ll be immediately let go.

Following the above steps in general is a good way to stay positive and proactive. The more you sit in worry, the harder it is to feel like you have options. You can’t control whether you’ll be laid off or not, but you can take these steps to make the process more manageable and be ready to start looking for a new position if needed.

“No one is immune to job cuts—even top performers. By reframing layoffs into an opportunity for growth, you can turn a potential setback into the ultimate career boost.” –Caroline Castrillon

Wrap up

No one can blame you for feeling anxious about layoffs, especially at a time when they are so common. But job security is never guaranteed, so it’s better to be prepared for the worst than to lament the possibilities. By taking these proactive steps, you’ll be ready to tackle anything the future throws at you.

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