What’s the right career move in the midst of an economic meltdown?

Take a chance.

Really, things are bad in the economy anyway.  It’s a hard time to get a job.  Why not take a stab at that wild idea you’re hoping to get to…someday?

Not long ago I was invited to speak to a career panel for college seniors and recent grads.  I find it tough to give out career advice – it feels like it devolves into “let me tell you what I did in my career” as if that’s a blueprint for anyone but me.

The backdrop for the panel was the blowup on Wall Street, which has only gotten worse in recent weeks (today’s 10.88% rise in the Dow notwithstanding).  I do think we’re in for a protracted period (a few years) of slow economic growth.  This means job losses, wage stagnation, the works.  So now is tricky time to be an eager recent college graduate with limited work experience who is looking for a job.  You’re likely competing with all the folks who have just been laid off (or are about to be laid off), interviewing with companies with very tight budgets who have people lining up outside their doors.

And my best guess is that this will be a record year of applicants to MBA programs, law schools and the likes.

Which is why I think now is a great time to take a risk.  Do you have an entrepreneurial idea?  Pursue it now.

For most everyone, the next couple of years are going to be tough going.  Why not take a risk and try that idea that’s been on the shelf just waiting for the right moment?  You have less to lose now than you did before, and since the foundation for “overnight success” takes years to build, you may as well start laying that foundation today.

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4 Responses to What’s the right career move in the midst of an economic meltdown?

  1. fourmi4x says:

    Thanks.
    It gave me the final motivation to launch my project.
    Gzave.

  2. Karen P. Katz, Career Acceleration Network (CAN) says:

    I like your irreverent spirit, Sasha. Let me suggest that start-ups, and small- and medium-sized companies may also offer opportunities for innovation and innovators…

    In keeping with the message of this Election, let’s revisit some ideas shared by former Labor Secretary, Robert Reich (Fast Company, Oct. 2000), “You Can Be a Change Insurgent.”

    The “Change Election of 2008″ motivated me to comment on Reich’s earlier analysis of the role of CHANGE… Read the original post @ Career Acceleration Notes: Here are the key points:

    You don’t have to be at the top of the organization.

    Power lies with people who know the technology.

    Power lies with people who know the market.

    Change insurgency can be a team sport.

    The best managers foster change insurgency throughout their organization.

    Yes, you CAN be a “Change Insurgent…”

  3. It’s always the right time to start a business, just as long as people are willing to stick with their idea through think and thin. However, some people do need external motivations such as market fluctuations to get the kick in the pants they need.

  4. You have few options but to be more entrepreneurial when the normal career paths are no longer available. Change is good?

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