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How to Weather Layoff Season?

An open laptop and notebook with a background of plants and rain.

2023 saw one of the worst waves of layoffs with reporting 262,735 employees laid off from over 1,190 tech companies due to various factors such as the global recession, cost-cutting and post-pandemic rightsizing. While the global market rebalances itself, young professionals are hopeful for an improved job market. However, 2024 has started on an equally devastating note with major companies such as PayPal, Microsoft and Spotify laying off 5,900 workers collectively.

While layoffs are a result of numerous macroeconomic factors and there is often little individuals can do, here’s how you can make yourself indispensable and weather the storm:

Never Stop Learning

A man sitting on a stool, instructing people.

There’s always a lot to learn on the job, but professionals who actively partake in upskilling, not only reinforce their job security within their organizations, but also boost their employability for other roles in case of a layoff. According to a study conducted by McKinsey & Company, workers that develop digital skills and are comfortable working with AI are better protected from the threat of automation and any reduction in labor for the sake of ‘efficiency’.

Be Resilient

A group of men laughing with merriment.

According to a survey by Monster, a global recruitment firm, 44% of their sample feared they would lose their job if they received negative feedback from their manager. While it’s natural to be more on edge in the current work climate, it’s also equally important to be resilient. Ideally, your workplace is where you succeed but also where you can comfortably fail and try new things. Regardless of what might come your way, a resilient mindset will help you achieve more at your workplace.

Keep in Touch

Two women talking to each other at Daftarkhwan | Vanguard.

Your professional network and how well connected you are becomes essential in maintaining your visibility within an organization. But beyond that, it’s your network that will come in handy should you need to find new employment. According to CNBC up to 80% of jobs are filled through networking.

Coworking spaces are a great initiation point into building a network and linking with professionals from a variety of industries. At Daftarkhwan we host a variety of events, from community gatherings and exhibitions to meet and greets with renowned professionals such as Dr. Umar Saif, Aziz Hashim and Vijay Tirathai.

Keep up the Good Work 

A man working on his laptop.

Panicked by the notion of a layoff, employees tend to make the mistake of trying to maximize their productivity to impress their employers at the expense of their own health. While it’s good to pick up more visible projects, if you hurtle at full speed for a prolonged time, it's possible you may burn out and thus, be more vulnerable. Instead, it's better to continue delivering quality work, even if it’s not new or attention grabbing. 

Amidst tech sector layoffs, professionals can safeguard their careers by continuously upskilling, particularly in digital and AI technologies, fostering resilience, and expanding their professional networks. These strategies not only enhance job security but also position individuals for future opportunities, helping them navigate and thrive in a volatile job market.


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