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How to recession-proof your career

Hey there! So, you want to know how to recession-proof your career, right?

Well, first things first, let's define what a recession is. Essentially, it's a significant drop in economic activity that can last for months or even years. It's characterized by negative GDP growth, rising unemployment, falling retail sales, and contracting measures of income and manufacturing. While recessions are considered a normal part of the business cycle - the regular pattern of economic expansion and contraction - they can still be pretty scary. And when the economy is unstable, it can cause a lot of anxiety for working professionals who worry about the stability and viability of their jobs.

Now, let's talk about what happens during a recession. Essentially, it's a widespread economic slowdown. Both big corporations and individual consumers feel the financial strain in various ways. Workers' reduced spending power leads to lower budgets for things like groceries, travel, entertainment, education, and more. This reduced cash flow impacts a lot of industries, causing a domino effect. Businesses see lower revenue and may not be able to afford as many employees. As a result, there may be furloughs, layoffs, and even business closures.

During a recession, workers are naturally worried about finding jobs, lower pay, and more competition for open positions. Unemployment rates rise, wages fall, and overall quality of life suffers.

But is it really possible to be completely recession-proof? To be honest, I think it's a bit of a pipe dream to believe that you can completely protect yourself from any economic crisis. No one can predict exactly how things will play out. However, there are some things you can do to increase your chances of weathering the storm. For example, learning skills that are in demand across industries can help make your career more adaptable and resilient.

But here's the good news: finance and accounting careers tend to be pretty recession-resistant. That's because trained professionals who can solve financial problems are in high demand, even during tough economic times. Plus, the books still need to be kept accurately, and audit and tax roles are needed every year regardless of market conditions. In fact, accounting professionals often have lower unemployment rates and higher job security than the average worker. So, if you can contribute to a company's financial functionality and processes, your job has a good chance of being recession-proof.

So, what can you do to further protect your career? Well, one thing you can do is invest in your resume by adding certifications and skills. For example, having a CPA, ACCA, CIMA or AAT can be especially helpful, as well as being proficient in various accounting software programs, coding, and team management. Additionally, gaining experience and expertise in your current position can also make your career more resistant to the impacts of a downturn.

At Ujuzingo, we understand the importance of supporting accounting and finance professionals as they recession-proof your careers, while also helping employers find more qualified candidates. If you're interested in taking some accounting and finance courses or checking out current job openings, be sure to check us out!