How Learning New Skills Can Help Make You Recession-Proof

Ed Sattar

Given the magnitude of this recession, with millions of people jobless across the world, you need to differentiate yourself to survive this crisis. What can you do to find a new job in case you are laid off, or how can you switch careers and settle into a new industry to become recession-proof?

Although business leaders and communities are laying down strategies to bounce back from the economic downfall, the negative impact is still on the rise. No matter what relief initiatives are taken to protect businesses from collapsing, the economy is not going to be as strong as it was in early 2020. Supply and demand in many industries are shifting, temporarily or permanently. Estimates tell us that almost 3 billion people around the world are now affected by the economic halt. You need to work on an individual level to survive these unforeseen times.

The world is continually changing, and this pandemic is impacting our jobs, skills and competencies. Below are a few ways to survive and succeed in times of crisis.

How will my job and career be impacted by a recession?

A crisis is characterized by two aspects: unpredictability and uncertainty. For instance, due to Covid-19, U.S. GDP is estimated to have dropped by 4.8% in the first quarter of 2020. Due to the abrupt pause in economic activity in both advanced and developing countries, the world economy is encountering a crucial challenge.

Some industries are completely paused because of restrictions on travel and gathering in large groups and because of the need for social distancing in the age of collaboration. The nature, duties and responsibilities of jobs are evolving. To endorse this massive change, we are pushed to acquire the know-how we lack. This crisis can be taken as an opportunity to prepare ourselves for the future by aiming for in-demand skills the workforce has been short on. IT is one such industry that has a major skills gap. You may want to learn these things to stay in demand when the economy starts improving. 

Why it is important to learn new skills, especially in current circumstances?

This crisis will catalyze huge changes across the world, and we will eventually learn how those who are able to survive were successful. Preparing yourself with those winning skills is the best strategy for a successful future.

How do you keep learning and growing in a time of crisis?

You need to have relevant expertise to survive. Most organizations are now operating in the digital landscape, which means there are new challenges to finding people with the right talent and experience.

How can you keep learning and growing in a time of crisis? Here are some practices to help you be successful.

Polish your existing skills. Becoming even more proficient with your current expertise will help you stay prepared for new developments in technology.

Analyze your skills gap. Conduct an effective analysis of your skills gap. List in-demand skills, and compare those you already have. Then locate programs that will help you bridge that gap.

Expand your skill set. Sticking with what you already know may not be enough. In the digital landscape, it is essential to learn adjacent skills to expand your knowledge base. 

Set a goal. Setting career goals makes you determined to develop yourself professionally. Before learning something new, ask yourself:

1. What is my reason for learning this skill?

2. Where do I want to be after I learn this?

Keeping the outcome in mind can help keep you motivated to learn.

Attend webinars. Many platforms are offering webinars and online programming tutorials. Attending these webinars will get you in touch with experts from different organizations and help add to your skill set.

Get online training and certifications. Attending webinars will help you learn, but acquiring certifications and training will provide proof of your knowledge. Enroll yourself in online IT training and certification programs to learn new concepts, refresh your understanding and learn new things.

Remember, a crisis may affect the economy, but not your learning process. Keep learning and progressing.

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