Many say that another wave of Recession is approaching. On the internet, you will find several articles talking about an upcoming recession. I am not an economic expert, but the current situation of the Coronavirus pandemic is the main reason to believe it.
I remember around 2008 some of my friends or known people losing their jobs. It was a really scary situation. As a software professional, with no power to exercise over the economy, what possibly can I do? One thing I can do for sure is to share with you about how to prepare for the recession while it is still to arrive and also hoping it never arrives. Just like the famous quote shown below states-
1. Physical & Mental Health :
Recession or not, one cannot emphasize the importance of physical and mental fitness in our daily life. You might be able to recollect an old saying in Marathi which states “पहिला सुख निरोगी काया” or as they say in English “Health is Wealth”.
Clearly, the wisdom lies in maintaining a strong and sound Physical and Mental Health. Now, when we estimate a recession hit us soon, we will need all the more mental and physical strength to survive the period.
Tips For You:
Start working on physical fitness. There are several beginner’s videos available on YouTube to start taking care of yourself right away. I recently found out an awesome Physical exercise form called “Tabata” which I would love to share with all.
Find a game partner and play physical games of your choice like Table Tenis, Basket Ball, Badminton, or even cricket.
If interested, join Gym, Yoga, or Zumba classes. You will find like-minded people there to keep in motivated.
Engage in Crosswords, Spellathon, Sudoku, Rubik’s Cube to keep your brain sharp.
Subscribe to motivational channels like TedEx or listen to good podcasts.
2. Live Within Means:
We IT professionals possess a classy cell phone as a status symbol, always on a shopping spree, and most do want based shopping, spend endlessly on brands, throw lavish parties just to maintain our so-called lifestyle.
This is high time for us to introspect our lifestyle. Hard as it may seem, but we might want to shed a lot of our wishes when the economic slowdown approaches. A want based lifestyle will have to be replaced with a need-based one in turbulent times of recession.
Tips For You:
Try to get rid of bad debts like a car loan, credit card loans, or personal loans.
Avoid using credit cards and buy things with only available cash if needed.
Follow budgeting formula of 40-30-30. Make investment a habit.
Prepare a monthly budget and follow it strictly.
3. Build Emergency Fund :
This is self-explanatory. As we are not actually facing job cuts right now, this is the time when you need to really start setting up for your emergency funds. So that even if things get really bad and everything goes wrong, you will still have your food and other living expenses are taken care of.
And imagine the kind of Peace of Mind you would have. You can at least spend the next six months peacefully and can focus on more important things like finding great opportunities without worries.
If you follow the above advice, you will end up saving 30% of your salary.
Calculate your expenses of 6-12 months and save that much amount in your bank account.
You can put that amount in Fixed Deposit just to make sure it is available whenever we want.
4. Improve Communications Skills :
I have observed a universal presence of “Good Communication Skills” in almost every job description I have gone through in the past 10 years or so. You also might have seen, apart from technical knowledge, people with good command over English are always ahead on the corporate ladder.
As a result, this is one quality I have personally always kept as a very important skill to maintain no matter what.
Tips For You:
Communication skills comprise of Reading, Speaking, Writing, and Listening in English. One can follow good dedicated youtube channels and continue to practice Communication in all its forms.
Watching English movies, web series, listening podcasts, TedEx, reading loudly are some of the proven ways to improve English communication.
Additionally, keep talking with family members, friends, customer care executives to get that fluency.
5. Invest in Yourself:
We don’t want to be easy prey during lay-offs should the situation arise. Even if we are technical experts in our areas, there is always room for improvement. IT is so dynamic, frequently something new is coming up in the market, and being aware of that is a challenge but must do to survive.
Tips For You:
There are innumerable free online courses on platforms like Skillshare, Udemy, Coursera for all the related latest technologies we can learn. Upgrade yourself with that in your free time.
Even if some of the courses are not free, it is still wise and valuable to invest in yourself. Join weekend classes, get a certificate. It will boost your confidence and add value to your resume.
You can also learn any foreign language like German, French, or Japanise for added advantage.
I would even suggest that if simultaneously one can write blogs or post videos with lessons on technical concepts you understood. Medium, LinkedIn, Twitter are the best platforms for sharing your knowledge with the world. it will make you stand out in thousands.
These extra efforts will put you forward than thousands of your colleagues and will surely be acknowledged by your organization or hiring companies.
6. Side Hustles :
I have seen, most of the software engineers working overtime like crazy (early morning meetings, whole day work, late-night onsite calls) just to get that good rating or that one promotion, which is still in control of our seniors and managers. Some are able to pull it off, but others are not. Should then we not give some time to generate other sources of income that we control completely?
Instead of earning 50k from a single source, earning 10k each from 5 different sources is anytime better. And the recession is the best time that will prove this. Because I strongly believe that each one of us has many other skills and talents which if honed efficiently, can be converted into cash minting sources.
Tips For You:
If you are good at writing, content writing jobs are readily available in the market, and out of them, technical blogging or content is the highest paid ones.
We are all very active on various social media platforms like FB, IG, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Needless to say that these sites are already proving beneficial sources of income for various people. We even get to solve many of our problems related to renting, services, shopping queries and so much more.
But how many of us are actually considering these sites as a place to create an effective network of people around us? How many of us are expanding our network with like-minded, progressive, resourceful, and learned kind of people where we help each other and grow?
Tips For You:
Utilize LinkedIn and Twitter to find, connect, and follow important and useful people from across the globe. I have seen job seekers using LinkedIn effectively to find a suitable job within a matter of a week.
Keep in touch with your colleagues and managers from all previous organizations. You never know who will help you in what way.
Use platforms like Facebook, Reddit, Quora to know influential people from your industry and follow them.
We have focused on how to prepare for the recession and shared several tips to be ready when the day arrives. But we at Opencodez also heartily pray that the day never arrives and we do not have to face the hardships of an economic slowdown no matter what. Till then, do not panic. For the time being, Stay Home. Stay Safe.