Recession Survival Kit

Recession is integral to shaping my career. 2001-02 taught me patience, 2008 taught me the concept of value, and 2020 tested the learning. In the article, I will share my assumptions and immediate action items for students and professionals—no motivation and optimism, just practical recession survival tactics. I would be happy to be proven wrong about a recession shortly, but what if I am not?

In recessions, survival is victory!


Why write about the recession before the holiday season?

I consider the holiday season from 1 October to 15 January — includes the anticipation and retuning, almost 15 weeks.

Holiday seasons often kill career momentum, especially for those who don’t actively update their career goals annually. It is a mistake to shut down entirely during holidays. Instead, I propose investing in learning something different. Not technical, just something you may be able to finish correctly before the end of the holidays. Something as trivial as making a well-cooked omelet that doesn’t stick to the pan and doesn’t fall apart while lifting it off the pan.

Ideally, I propose you upskill. This holiday season, it seems necessary.

Why is this holiday season so critical?

Inflation has been on the rise throughout the year. As a result, the rate of layoffs in the software sector is picking up rapidly. Vacations and holidays are costlier. The energy bills in Europe are much higher. Overall a liquidity crunch on the personal front is possible.

The advertising tsunami and sale offers will be imminent. Cutting on spending will be more challenging than usual since the businesses are looking at the first entire holiday season since 2019. Companies that survived the pandemic need to regain their profits, and the economy doesn’t seem to be in shape to entertain that scenario.

How to utilize the holiday season to become recession ready?

As mentioned, the possibility of a recession seems high hence the proactive items for being prepared. As an instructor to almost 60k students globally, I feel responsible for at least informing about the possibility. In short, step back, gather your thoughts, identify the necessity, and, most importantly, act in a decisive manner.

  1. Focus on personal finances. Set a realistic budget first and then spend.
  2. Revisit the resume and build the latest version within the next two weeks. Shape it further in the upcoming weeks.
  3. Don’t start learning a new technical stack in the next 12 weeks. You won’t be able to add it to your resume. Avoid certifications at your own cost hoping for a better job in the next quarter. Cash is king.
  4. Focus on shortcomings in your resume and start fixing them immediately. Focus on fundamentals and debugging current stacks.
  5. Start taking stock of the hybrid work situations at your office. Of course, the reality will only be apparent after the holiday season, but getting your routine in shape can give you an edge.
  6. Read at least one of the books I have recommended in this list.
  7. Don’t start applying to new jobs if you haven’t planned your transition.
  8. Don’t start a new investment till the beginning of next year. Hold the bonuses and extra cash in the safest of debt instruments.
  9. Don’t waste time and money on interview portals in the next 16 weeks. Stick to your career plan. The MAANG/FAANG shutters seem to be down for the foreseeable future.
  10. Don’t wait for Black Friday sales on educational content. Invest and get started at the current discount prices. Time is money!

For the past month, I have been working on 25+ hours of new course content, which is available now. Recession survival is at the heart of each course. My survival is based on the audience’s willingness to purchase the courses instead of waiting for free coupons. Let’s hope I can make it through this recession with your support.

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