Multinational corporations like Google, Amazon and Zoom have begun a series of mass job cuts and hiring freezes in response to the economic cool off. These cuts have cost U.S. workers thousands of jobs.
Trouble in tech
Recent mass layoffs spark worries for those who went through previous recessions in the U.S.
Mass layoffs are newsworthy and usually the result of rapid industry growth that has since cooled off. Tech companies are making major changes because they are most affected by the economic downturn.
The tech industry boomed as a result of COVID-19 because consumers looked to new technologies to solve their needs. Then, the pandemic weakened, workers returned to the office, and consumer needs changed again.
“8,000+ mass layoff actions affected over 1.5 million workers during the 2008 great recession,” Perez said. “While the recent layoff trends are nowhere near previous rates, they are still painful and disruptive for thousands of families.”
“Rising inflation and interest rates exacerbate the fears of a significant economic deceleration for 2023.”
Leaders weighing their options may find that layoffs could cost them in the long run.
“Survival is key when dealing with a downturn, but they need to think about who and what will help them thrive once conditions improve,” Perez said.
“Good leaders worry about firm survival, and better ones also worry about managing their employees’ concerns and positive engagement to keep employees whose talents align with the company’s mission.”
Perez suggested managers promote procedural fairness.
“A fair, respectful and transparent decision-making process will decrease employees’ anxiety and enhance organizational commitment,” Perez assured. “Managers should also be proactive and try to cultivate a culture of innovation and adaptability.
“The more adaptable your employees become the better prepared they will be to face radical changes.”
Advice for job seekers
Some new graduates may feel they’re entering the job market at the wrong time. But the job market is still strong in most industries. Recent data shows that there are 1.7 job openings for every unemployed job seeker.
Perez recommends looking to advice pinpointed by Dr. Daniel Goering, assistant professor of management. Goering coauthored a meta-analysis of common career advice to find the most impactful recommendations for one’s career growth.
The top advice is “take your career into your own hands by adopting an entrepreneurial spirit” and “network outside of your organization and industry and look for opportunities.” Both points encourage workers to develop their expertise and leverage their abilities.
“We all need to remind ourselves of our purpose, which consists of using our talents to solve other people’s problems,” Perez said. “A continuous learning mindset will always improve your career options.”