Motivated, skilled, and networked professionals with good soft skills, marketing skills, business focus and right attitude may be the ones least affected by economic down turns, but even they are not guaranteed to survive in this volatile industry. Companies don’t care how much knowledge, skills, and capabilities walk out the door. They only care about how much budget money they can save. At times, it really matters to be at the right place at the right time or know the right person at the right time. So, how do you cater for these types of uncertainties in your career? Create additional streams of income, even if you are an employee. There are a number of streams one can look at:
- Find a side job as a freelancer. E.g. http://www.elance.com/, http://odesk.com/, http://www.guru.com, live person, etc.
- Find a part-time job as a teacher, an instructor, or a lecturer at your local training institute, technical college or university.
- Offer part-time consulting services in your field of expertise. Networking can come in handy here.
- Write your own book. Publishing has never been easier and very affordable through the print on demand publishing. E.g. Lulu.com, iUniverse.com, Lightningsource, etc. There are a number of Java/JEE books self-published at Lulu.com
- Start an ad-supported blog. E.g. Blogger, Google Adsense, Wordpress, WordpressAds, etc
- Build your own Website. E.g. http://www.bluehost.com/, etc
Note: Be careful not to break any of your employer’s no compete policies or contracts.
Additional streams may not -- at least initially -- make enough money to replace a full-time job, but they can cushion the pain of income loss while helping you acquire new skills, keeping positive and motivated, and growing your professional network. Publishing books/articles (http://java.dzone.com/ ) and writing blogs can also build a professional profile online. The Web has become a very valuable tool for communicating your value as a professional, expressing your capabilities, networking (e.g. LinkedIn ), etc. You don’t have to be a jack of all trades or a brilliant professional to build your own brand online. All what takes is to be creative and express your unique value with passion and perseverance. If things are looking more promising, you can promote your online products, books and services through Google Adwords.