What if, in the end, you get caught up in a whirlwind of layoffs? Don’t worry. Just use this time to reevaluate your options. “Tough times call for creative thinking!” Hernandez says.
Pick the right industry: It may be time for a change. There are some sectors that are expected to grow even as the economy slows, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. People will still be getting sick, fighting in nightclubs and seeking knowledge, so jump into health care, security or education if you’re attracted to those fields. An interest in alternative fuels and the environment could also bode well in the coming years. And accountants are in high demand, so hop to it if you’re handy with a calculator.
Go back to school: Use the downtime to upgrade your skills. "In tough times, it's imperative to keep them razor sharp," Hernandez says. “Look for industry- or position-specific seminars and online courses, or go back to school. It’s an investment that will give you a chance to move up the ladder and earn more money.”
Step out on your own: President Barack Obama has provided greater access to Small Business Administration loans for minority-owned businesses, so take the money and run toward your dreams. The SBA even offers free online courses to guide you through everything from writing a business plan to finding customers. Check it out at sba.gov.