layoffs_up_in_the_air.jpgOnce we've found a job we enjoy doing, many of us have visions of growing old with the companies we work for—just as our parents’ generation stuck to their jobs long enough to receive the commemorative watch and plaque of appreciation. But these days, employees move from one company to another every few years, and sometimes it isn’t by choice.

Organizations may have a tougher time staying ahead due to stiffer competition and ever-evolving technology. There may come a point when your company won’t be able to cope, and you might be the recipient of a pink slip.

Remember the scene from Up in the Air, when George Clooney's character was single-handedly (not to mention expertly) dismissing whole offices full of people in a single trip? While this might not be too common in the Philippines these days, it does happen, especially when companies are absorbed into larger ones or get into financial straits they aren't able to dig themselves out of without cutting a lot of resources (including manpower).

So if things look grim at work and you feel that there’s a chance you'll be laid off, don’t just cross your fingers and hope you aren’t a target. Make the best of a challenging situation.

Manage the news positively, says Clare Harris in her book Minimize Stress, Maximize Success. Once you’ve confirmed with management the buzz about layoffs, take a deep breath and heed the experts’ tips:

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(First published in Marie Claire Philippines, You First section as "When Layoffs Happen to Good People" in March 2007; adapted for use in Female Network. Screen cap from Up in the Air courtesy of Paramount Pictures.)

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