What is Career Cushioning? Why You Might Want to Try It in 2024

As I began writing this text about profession cushioning, I couldn’t assist however marvel … am I a profession cushion-er?

I’ve a aspect hustle (shoutout to CKTL Candle Co.). But it surely technically solely “counts” if I’m utilizing that aspect hustle as a way of safety in case I lose my day job as HubSpot’s Advertising and marketing Weblog Editor.

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That’s what the idea of profession cushioning is all about — and lots of people are doing it in 2024.

Desk of Contents

So, what precisely is profession cushioning?

Profession cushioning permits you to “cushion the blow” in the event you lose your job unexpectedly. It’s about being proactive and creating further alternatives for your self within the occasion of a layoff or sudden termination.

This might imply actively networking for potential job alternatives, conserving your skilled property updated, or beginning a enterprise on the aspect.

Consider it like, “Hey, simply in case this job or profession doesn’t work out, I’m going to have a backup.”

And, in some instances, a number of.

Who’s doing it?

Profession cushioning isn’t particular to 1 job subject or occupation. Given the rise of inflation and enhance in layoffs throughout industries, professionals in any respect ranges are justifiably nervous about job safety.

And whereas the idea of profession cushioning isn’t model new, it’s undoubtedly trending this yr.

Why Profession Cushioning is Scorching Proper Now

I discussed inflation and layoffs as main the reason why individuals are conserving their profession choices open.

Let’s have a look at among the stats:

  • In January 2024, about 3 million folks misplaced a job or accomplished momentary jobs within the U.S.
  • To this point in 2024, over 42,000 workers have been laid off, together with greater than 160 tech firms.
  • In January 2024, the month-to-month inflation price for items and companies within the U.S. elevated by 3.1% in comparison with January 2023.

My LinkedIn feed feels fairly reflective of this knowledge given the variety of people who find themselves “Open to Work” after a layoff or prepared for a profession change.

career cushioning definition and statistics

Must you begin profession cushioning?

That is very a lot a private choice. Nonetheless, to me, the info means that it may not be a foul thought to have a Plan B in your again pocket.

Listed here are some issues to think about:

  • Do you’re feeling happy and safe at work? Lack of job satisfaction is one other large cause professionals are making different plans.
  • Does your skillset want a refresh? Upskilling is a profession cushioning tactic, however it’s all the time a good suggestion to refine your experience.
  • Are you able to comfortably discover new alternatives? Profession cushioning will be nice, however don’t do it on the danger of shedding your present job.

My take? I began my candle enterprise for enjoyable again in 2020. However, TBH, it’s good to know I’d nonetheless have a supply of earnings if I misplaced my job tomorrow.

Find out how to Cushion Your Personal Profession

Listed here are 5 methods to do profession cushioning proper in 2024.

1. Ability up in each new and present areas.

That is nice recommendation whether or not you’re profession cushioning or not. Expertise are supposed to be cultivated.

Certain, the identical advertising and marketing frameworks I realized whereas finishing my MBA in 2021 should still apply. However the expertise wanted to be an ideal marketer evolve with traits and time.

For instance, you couldn’t have informed me three years in the past that I’d be utilizing AI in my day-to-day workflow. But it surely’s right here, and it’s a ability I needed to (and wished to) develop.

Fortunately, there are tons of free assets, like HubSpot Academy, which can be out there that can assist you stage up your skilled ability set.

2. Hold your LinkedIn and resume up to date.

Even in the event you aren’t prepared to use for jobs simply but, frequently replace your work historical past as you make new accomplishments at work and in life.

Have you ever just lately hit a goal or aim? Did you grasp a brand new ability like we talked about in #1?

Write it down.

I promise, it’s simpler to trace these achievements in your LinkedIn or resume after they occur somewhat than making an attempt to replace issues suddenly. (Talking from expertise right here.)

That is very true in the event you’re in a bind and have to land a brand new job quick.

3. Nurture and broaden your community.

I talked about conserving your LinkedIn up to date within the final tip, however it’s a lot greater than only a resume.

LinkedIn is the proper place to attach with like-minded folks in your trade or make new skilled associates.

With the correct community, you’ll achieve entry to job listings, networking occasions, and referral sources for brand spanking new alternatives.

Placing your self on the market and selling your model can go a good distance towards making a profession cushion.

4. Begin a enterprise or discover a aspect hustle.

Turning into an entrepreneur just isn’t straightforward, however it’s doable in the event you discover one thing you’re keen about.

You might take into account turning considered one of your present hobbies right into a aspect hustle. That’s how I grew to become a candle enterprise proprietor.

Or you would decide up some further work associated to an space or ability you’re fascinated about. Possibly you actually like to write down, so that you decide up some freelance hours for considered one of your favourite weblog websites.

Who is aware of, you could possibly flip that hustle right into a full-time gig.

No matter you select, simply don’t get into the candle sport. I don’t want any extra competitors 😉

5. Don’t danger your day job.

Like I stated, profession cushioning is an effective way to create a job security web for your self. However the entire level is to create a backup plan IF you want it.

After all, in the event you’re already seeking to change fields or swap up your profession path, have at it. Nonetheless, the important thing to profession cushioning is to offer your self choices within the occasion you lose your job.

Don’t unintentionally make {that a} actuality by including an excessive amount of to your plate or neglecting your present employer.

In different phrases, “if it ain’t broke, don’t repair it.” Simply cushion it.

The Backside Line

If you happen to ask me, it doesn’t damage to discover new issues and preserve your choices open.

To reply the query about whether or not I take into account myself a profession cushion-er, I’m going to go together with … sure.

It’s about extra than simply my aspect hustle, although. I’m all the time searching for probabilities to be taught new issues and develop as an individual.

And if that’s how you’re feeling too, then I say it doesn’t damage so as to add somewhat cushion.

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