A few months ago, a friend of mine was laid off by the NY Times due to downsizing. She had worked her way up from several positions at other highly prestigious publications. And now she was out. She was also under 30.
I listened as she talked through her resume and focused on possibilities rather than “poor me.” She knew she was going to be fine. She just didn’t like the uncertainty.
My recommendation to her: shift your view of the situation from “uncertainty” to “possibility”. If you think of every job as a project, you’ll have the positive mindset that one day it will be over and it will be time to move onto the next chapter in your life.
Corporate cultures have completely transformed over the last several decades. Innovation and “what’s next” are the focus. Loyalty is no longer a priority—not by choice, but out of necessity. If someone can’t evolve, they can’t contribute. That’s why I encourage anyone I coach to learn everything possible in their present position, see what opportunities are available in their company and if they don’t see a long-term fit, move on.
This mentality means relying on yourself and your talents, understanding the value of risk and planning for your next move at all times—not just when you’re forced to. It also means you can be just fine without a corporate position or a steady job. We are in an era where entrepreneurs and independent contractors have opportunities previously uncalculated in the marketplace. They are no longer the fringe, but a necessary and vital part of the economy.
I’ve been an independent small business owner for over a quarter of a century. And I’ve referred to myself on more than one occasion as “gainfully unemployed” because every day is different. Every client is unique—and I think of everything as a project, because it is.