How To Find Out If You're Getting Laid Off

Have you ever wondered how to find out if you're getting laid off? Although there are no magic formulas, there are key indicators to finding out about job layoffs. In addition, there are proactive approaches you can take with your own career to mitigate the chances of you or your team becoming the victim of corporate layoffs.

Key Indicators For Potential Job Layoffs

Has your company recently purchased or merged with another company? One of the first things companies look at when they merge with other companies are ways to reduce overhead and operational costs. There's no need to have duplicate accounting departments, legal departments, etc.

How well does your company perform in the marketplace, and what debt does the company carry? Keep up with your company's performance by analyzing financial statements and balance sheets. Most public companies provide this information on their websites, but you can also find this information at places like Yahoo Finance. If your company is headed for bankruptcy, there may be potential layoffs.

Are you and/or your team providing value to the company? You provide value to the company by generating revenue or reducing costs, and reporting your documented results to management. Your value should exceed the cost of your expenses (payroll, benefits, etc.). Even if you're in a position that you don't think generates revenue or reduces cost, you must be able to show your value through indirect means. For example, if you're a human resources specialist, the value you provide might be the employee churn rate. By helping managers hire and retain top talent, you reduce the cost of hiring and training new employees. You must market and sell your value to your management chain.

Are you a top performer? Even when companies layoff employees, they sometimes try to retain the best talent by offering relocation packages or alternative job positions. In addition, sometimes companies will reduce headcount by getting rid of the worst performing employees. Make sure you're a top performer.

Have there been recent changes to executive management? Sometimes when companies bring in new management, they immediately begin looking at ways to reorganize and centralize different functions, often evidenced by hiring consultants to analyze the situation. Though there's not much you can do in these situations, make sure the value of what you provide the company is clearly documented and presented to executive management. If consultants are brought in to analyze the systems and processes, make sure you can show documented proof of improved results and ongoing value.

Even when you do provide value, document it, and report it to your management chain, there's no guarantee that you or your department are safe from layoffs. If rumors start floating around, you must ignore them. One sure way to hurt your chances is to start believing that you're going to get laid off before anything is official. Once you think you might get laid off, this becomes your vision, and you start working towards it. Instead of trying to do their best work, some employees who think they're getting laid off basically give up and don't perform well. Regardless of what you think may or may not happen, don't start performing poorly.

Whether or not you think you might become a victim of a corporate layoff, don't let your future lie in the hands of your employer. Take control of your own career development, create a career exit strategy, and work towards your career goals.

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