This morning’s reports that the economy may slip into another recession brought about mixed emotions. Do you laugh at the so-called experts who are so out of touch with real Americans as to think we’ve ever come out of the recession in the first place? What do they mean “another” recession? Do you simply buckle down again when you’ve barely loosened a belt that was so tight most Americans could hardly breathe under the pressure?
According to USA Today, the 39 economists polled Aug. 3-11 put the chance of “another” downturn at 30%. What I wonder is if these were the same economists that said we came out of the recession in 2009? Newsflash: Main Street has been in The Great Recession for nearly 4 years (starting in ’07 and we’re still in it). Looming in their predictions is the fact that Wall Street, more than Main Street, and the rest of the world, listens to these predictions and reacts accordingly. The 30% prediction is twice as high as 90 days ago – another shock to our already fragile economy.
On the heels of this “30% chance of recession” prediction came their expert prediction that jobless rates will fall at an agonizingly slow pace to only 8.8% in the next 12 months. We’re at 9.1% now which shows gloom forecasts for the year ahead if the job growth rate is a mere 0.3%. Piggyback this on the previous prediction that by April 2012 they saw us at 8.2%, or nearly 1.0% job growth rate, and we’re in for job growth slower than the rise of unleavened bread.
On The Job Market?
Just 13 months ago my first book, Career Sudoku hit the shelves at Barnes and Noble and Amazon alike. In Chapter 8, Job Offer Negotiation, I included a figure from EDGE that 61% of employers surveyed are willing to negotiate a higher salary for qualified candidates. Given the shift in today’s economy and the predictions, this statistic may or may not have changed, but my recommendation to clients and job seekers alike has definitely changed. As the saying goes “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”.
Negotiating an Offer = Dangerous
If you land a job offer in today’s volatile economy and uber competitive job market, you have three choices.
1. Be grateful. Say thank you, that you’re excited to join the organization and you’d like to spend a night to review the offer and respond (then accept with gratitude).
2. Hire an expert. Avoid taking on the task of these highly sensitive negotiations alone. Hire a professional career coach that’s well versed in job offer negotiations to define what to negotiate for, conduct a mock negotiation and provide a script (if you’d like one) for your actual negotiation.
3. Go it alone. If you’re okay losing the offer and you want to do this, go for it. Know that in today’s market there’s always candidate #2 ready, willing – and waiting – to take the offer you negotiate too hard or too aggressively against.
Preparation = Success
The best way to guarantee your career is safe is to be prepared. Have your resume, LinkedIn profile and cover letter ready to present to potential employers and hiring managers. If you’re already on the market, understand the competition. 9 out of 10 resumes end up in the trash. The one that lands on the hiring manager’s desk is only read for less than 60 seconds and 85% of hiring managers read just the top 50% of page one. Think of that top 50% of page one as the curb appeal on your resume; make it captivating, compelling and interesting for the reader. Visit us here for more resume tips and a free resume analysis.