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Mitigating Being Laid Off from Your New Job Is Your Responsibility

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Is it just me, but does it not seem downsizing is more prevalent this year than during the post-pandemic years following the 2008 recession? I say this because, for the past six months, I frequently receive emails from readers telling me they started a new job only to be laid off months later. Several readers have told me they’ve been laid off twice, sometime three times, in the last five years.

It surprises me how few candidates vet my employer during an interview; I’m rarely asked the hard questions.

I realize that thoroughly vetting an employer when whatever savings you have is rapidly shrinking and financial pressures are mounting is easier said than done. Most job seekers just want to get on the payroll, so they don’t ask questions that might raise red flags. On the other hand, your diligence may result in you dodging a bullet.

Examples of financial questions I’d ask my interviewer and/or founders at a start-up company:

 

  • Is the company profitable? If not, when do you project it will be?
  • What does the company’s runway look like? (Amount of time before they run out of money.)
  • Is the company raising capital? If yes, what is the amount and how much is committed?

 

For public companies, a great deal of financial information is public and most likely on their website; therefore, I’d look at:

  • The company’s “SEDAR” (System for Electric Document Analysis and Retrieval). All employees of a publicly traded company and job seekers seeking employment with such a company should be familiar with SEDAR, a database maintained by the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA). SEDAR is comparable to the U.S. SEC’s EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval) database. You can access SEADR at www.sedar.com.
  • Recent quarterly earnings reports.
  • Recent letters to shareholders from the CEO.

 

Reviewing this financial information will inform me of any economic headwinds the company is experiencing and what they anticipate for the future. I am looking for growth, profitability, and capital on hand.

Note asking the ‘hard’ questions doesn’t guarantee you’ll get honest answers. Prepare for a deep dive into all aspects of the company, including speaking with current employees. Always verify the information you’re given. Google is a job seeker’s best friend.

As a corporate world survival tip, keep in mind that no matter how careful you are, there are always unknown variables (e.g., a pandemic) that can affect your job’s existence. So, heed my advice, whether you’re an active job seeker or a long-term employee—always be looking. The days an employer could offer lifelong employment ended in the mid-80s.

To mitigate the risk of being laid off from a new job, job seekers should consider the following two things, regardless of what their due diligence reveals.

 

  • Seek revenue-generating roles that contribute directly to the business’s profitability.

 

In most cases, cost-center positions are the first to be cut when cuts need to be made. Such job cuts will have little impact on sales; hence, avoid taking on a cost-center position.

A revenue-generating employee is less likely to be laid off than a cost-centre employee, who is a distraction (READ: liability) to the company’s profitability. It’s a cold business reality that employees who bring in the money have more value than those employees who can’t point to adding dollars to the bottom line. In tough times, businesses need folks who can ring up sales.

I’m not privy to Elon Musk’s strategy with Twitter, but I find it interesting that he can let go 50% of Twitter’s employees, have 20% more walk out, and the platform, as I write this, continues to function. What does this say about the value of the work most Twitter employees were doing?

Before pursuing a job opportunity, ask yourself: How would the company’s bottom line be affected if this position suddenly disappeared?

 

  • Ask for a healthy compensation structure, but not so high that you become unaffordable at the slightest downturn.

 

All the self-proclaiming career experts are selling the warm and fuzzy narrative to seek your worth. Yes, getting a big salary feels good. However, “big salaries” come with strings, one being more is expected from you. (An employee’s compensation needs to be justifiable from a business ROI perspective.) The other is that you may make yourself unaffordable should the business need to cut costs.

My advice to jobseekers is to negotiate a base salary they can live with. Then, as applicable, negotiate a commission or bonus structure, profit sharing, RRSP matching, additional benefits, and perks as part of their overall compensation package. Accounting-wise, it makes more sense for a company to lay off an employee making $85K a year as opposed to an employee earning $45K plus 5% commission, even though their combined base salary and commission may be more than $85K.

 

Now’s not the time to be greedy. 

 

Finally, when you start a new job, make it your mission to show your new employer that you fit in, that you’re willing and able to contribute to the company’s success, and that hiring you was a good business decision and always be looking.

______________________________________________________________

 

Nick Kossovan, a well-seasoned veteran of the corporate landscape, offers advice on searching for a job. You can send Nick your questions at artoffindingwork@gmail.com.

 

 

 

 

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Ontario LCBO stores reopen after two-week strike – The Globe and Mail

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  1. Ontario LCBO stores reopen after two-week strike  The Globe and Mail
  2. ‘They freaked out’: How a deal to end the LCBO strike almost fell apart at the last minute  Global News Hamilton
  3. LCBO stores reopen 18 days after workers walked off the job as stores anticipate deliveries to restock  Toronto Star
  4. LCBO stores reopen, but union says fight to save public profits persists  CityNews Edmonton
  5. Ontario restaurants struggle to procure booze as the LCBO strike continues  CP24

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Before Spending Money on a ‘Career Coach,’ Do Yourself a Favour, First Try These Job Search Strategies

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I’m sure you’re aware of the “career coaching” industry—Internet talking heads promising job search and career success—that’s sprung up in recent years. Worth noting: The industry is unregulated. All career coaches are self-proclaimed; no certification or licensing is required.

 

Career coaches have one ultimate goal: To make money off you.

 

Today’s tight job market is making job seekers frustrated and desperate, which career coaches are taking advantage of with their promise of insider knowledge, personalized guidance, and a direct line to the hidden job market. Career coaches market themselves as a shortcut to finding a job, which is appealing when you’ve been unemployed for a while.

 

I’m not averse to hiring a career coach to assist you with your job search; it’s your money. However, keep in mind a career coach…

 

  • is a significant expense, especially if you’re unemployed
  • will only offer common sense advice, nothing that you probably already don’t know or haven’t read or heard before, and
  • doesn’t have insider knowledge

 

…and you’ll still need to do the activities related to job searching.

 

When asked, “Nick, should I hire a career coach?” my answer is an unequivocal “No!” Conducting your job search solo will not only save you money, you’ll also be developing job search skills you’ll need for the next time—chances are there’ll be a next time—you’re job hunting. Before spending thousands of dollars on a career coach, I suggest first trying the following job search strategies.

 

Optimize your online presence.

 

In today’s digital-first job market, employers will check your online digital footprint to evaluate your candidacy; are your interview-worthy? Start with the obvious: Ensure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date and showcases your quantified accomplishments (a non-quantified statement is an opinion) so employers can see the value you can add. Do yourself a favour, read LinkedIn Mastery: A Comprehensive Guide to Navigating Digital Landscapes Effectively, by Benjamin Stone.

 

Necessary: Stay active on LinkedIn!

 

Your LinkedIn profile can’t be non-active. Maximizing LinkedIn’s potential requires regularly engaging with content, commenting on posts, and contributing original content. Engaging actively and visibly on LinkedIn will lead to opportunities.

 

Next:

 

  • List your social media accounts.
  • Deactivate accounts you are no longer using.
  • Set any accounts you don’t want prospective employers or recruiters to see to private.
  • Ensure your social media profiles (g., display name, handle, headshot, bio) convey the same message about your professional background.

 

Leverage your existing network (a low-hanging fruit few job seekers take advantage of).

 

Everyone has a network of some sort. This means since all job opportunities are attached to people—good news—there are job opportunities all around you. Often, your barista, dentist, hairstylist, neighbours, fellow members of whatever club or association you’re a part of, and, of course, family and friends can help open doors for you.

 

Tell everyone you know that you’re looking for a new job. Always carry extra copies of your resume and hand them out when appropriate. You’ll be surprised at the number of people willing to help you when they understand your situation.

 

Read these two books:

 

 

Ferrazzi outlines practical strategies for building relationships, networking, and leveraging connections

.

 

Hollins provides actionable strategies for achieving your job search and career goals, such as overcoming procrastination and boosting productivity with focus and discipline.

 

Apply less, connect more.

 

Applying online is a waste of time. In previous columns, I’ve noted that applying online is comparable to playing the lottery; you’re hoping a stranger hires you. Numerous studies have shown that most jobs aren’t advertised; they’re filled through connections and referrals.

 

Job searching today is a long game; you need to be patient. Today, you need to network your way into a company and identify opportunities, which no career coach can do for you. It’s unlikely the resume you submit online will be reviewed. Paying to have your resume redesigned won’t get it more views; getting it in front of people who can hire you will.

 

Take what you will from the following.

 

A few months back, a job seeker asked me, “I’ve been working as a help desk agent at a healthcare software company for five years. I want to become a Director of IT at a large multinational company. What should I do?”

 

How should I know? I’m not a Director of IT. Why not ask the Director of IT at a large multinational company?

 

Take advantage of the fact that people love talking about themselves. Dinner with someone who holds the position you aspire to is a better investment than hiring a career coach who lacks your dinner partner’s real-world experience. I charted my career path by observing those ahead of me and seeking their advice. Talking to people who are where you want to be will benefit your job search and help you achieve your career aspirations.

 

By shifting your mindset, optimizing your online presence, leveraging your existing network, staying engaged on LinkedIn, and connecting with the right people, you won’t need to hire a costly career coach, and you’ll develop skills you can use throughout your career.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Nick Kossovan, a well-seasoned veteran of the corporate landscape, offers “unsweetened” job search advice. You can send Nick your questions to artoffindingwork@gmail.com.

 

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How to Start a Business?

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Market Research

You have to conduct research on the whole market and find out the gap. This gap will be your opportunity. Moreover, this research will give you an idea of how different businesses work and how they fulfill the needs of the people. Businesses work due to the demand for their products and services in the market. So, through this research, you have to collect information about the following things:

 

 

You can use surveys, questionnaires, and focus group interviews to extract information on the above factors.

 

Business Plan

Develop a complete roadmap for your business. This plan should cover all the details from the manufacturing to the sales and pricing.

 

It has a summary of the complete execution of the company, including the mission of the company, product or service of the company, competitors of the company, management, and employees of the company, as well as the location of the company. This plan should be in such a way that everyone can easily understand.

Investment For Business

If you are not self-funded, then you will need investment for your business. There are several ways to find investment, such as the following:

 

●     Venture capital

You can offer the shares of the company in exchange for shares of the company. In the beginning, you have to offer the company ownership to finance your project.

●     Crowdfunding

In this type of investment, a large number of people give funds to the startup. They are not given shares and profits from the company. However, the company provides them with gifts in the future for their finances.

●     Loans

There are many government and private companies that are offering loans for small and large companies. For this loan, you have to prepare a business plan, expense sheet, and expected profits. You can find several companies that are providing loans for businesses, such as Lendforall, Baker Tilly, West Bank Union, etc.

Structure of Business

Before starting a business, you have to select its structure. Traditionally, you will find the following structures of business:

  • Sole proprietorship
  • Partnership
  • Limited Liability Company
  • Corporation

 

To select any structure, you must analyze and compare your business with others. You will get an idea of which structure will be the most suitable for your business.

Business Tools

Nowadays, there are several business tools available in the market. These tools have made business management easy to a great extent. However, you have to invest in these tools to compete the market. Here are some important tools for business:

 

 

Many other tools are available in the market that are used for different management purposes.

Registration of Business

You have to register your business with the federal government. Moreover, you should apply for the insurance for your business. There are many other documents, such as tax IDs from federal and state governments, licenses and permits for your business, and applying for a business bank account.

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