From Black Voices — If it seems like you’re getting the cold shoulder at work, that chill you feel may be more than your imagination. Too many people ignore obvious red flags, as well as subtle indications that they may be about to get the axe. Here are 10 warning signs about your job security and your future with your current employer:

1. You’re kept out of the loop:
When senior management starts to put the kibosh on communications with you, take it as a serious threat to your job stability. It usually starts innocently enough, with you not being cc’ed on certain emails or you not being invited to take part in meetings you’d previously attended. When your position is really in jeopardy, you’ll have things slowly (or sometimes quickly) taken away from you, like the company car you’d been driving, access to certain files, or the keys to the executive bathroom.

2. Your performance review is bad/OK:
Getting a good job review, or even a stellar one, is no guarantee you’ll keep pulling in a paycheck. But anytime you get a so-so review, or an awful one, that’s definite cause for alarm. Bosses typically give mediocre performance appraisals to people they don’t plan to keep around.

3. You can’t get a raise:
It’s easy for employers to justify keeping wages down in the current economic environment. Many bosses, in fact, seem to send employees the message that “You should be grateful to just have a job.” Still, savvy workers know that raises and financial perks of all kinds are doled out in good and bad economic climates.

Maybe you’ve gone one year or so without a raise. No problem. But consecutive years without a pay hike? Hello! That spells trouble. Even if your job isn’t on the cutting block, your stagnating wages are a strong indication that your employer doesn’t think much about your overall merit. Start dusting off your resume.

4. Your underlings and co-workers are getting promoted:
Is everyone around you advancing in their careers, but your work seems to go unnoticed? Uh-oh. That’s a huge warning sign that your days may be numbered. No one likes to feel expendable, and unfortunately when you fail to climb the corporate ladder, that’s exactly how many bosses view you: as expendable.

5. A new boss is brought in:
It can often be tricky to read between the lines when a new head honcho takes the helm of your department or when you suddenly have to report to an entirely different supervisor. If the switch was made because your former boss was deemed incompetent, unprofessional or simply unable to get results, the new boss may have little use for you. This is particularly true if you were close with your ex-supervisor and your work or projects are closely linked, or you are perceived as being loyal to the old regime.

In such circumstances, even if you’re perfectly competent and a team player who’s willing to play ball with the new guy, office politics may ultimately do you in.

(Continue Reading 5-10 @ Black Voices…)

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  • Ebony Maple Leaf

    Being fired is never a good thing. I was once fired from my 1st full-time job at a university. It really did come from nowhere…..it was instigated by gossip from my fellow co-workers (which really were full blown lies) that made it’s way to my boss: there were saying I lied about being there for my mother’s surgery and instead took time off to do a term paper….when in truth, my mother did have surgery and while I was home, I did do a paper…..multitasking anyone?) My boss believed the hype without asking for proof from the surgery and gave me ask.

    I feel good b/c when the economy hit rock bottom in 2007/2008, that whole dept was LAID OFF from the university…..God don’t like fugly.

    Anyway, there are some steps to ensure that being fired is not the be all and the end all:

    1. Save about 20% of each paycheck into a rainy day acct (or the apocalypse acct.). Just in case you do get the axe, you have enough money to help with bills.

    2. Sometimes you may have to work below educational level to make ends meet: When you’re unemployed with a bachelors or a masters (or higher) and bill collectors keep a calling, no shame in getting a job as a cashier or a stock clerk. Remember, hopefully, it will only be temporary……..

    3. Get a couple of recommendations from coworkers or other superiors from the job you were axed from: Yeah, I know, when you get fired, you wanna give a good cuss fest when you leave, BUT DO NOT DO THAT. People make enemies, as well, as allies……humble yourself and ask a few of your allies about writing you a letter of recommendation or being a positive reference for you (letter of recommendation is better, b/c as a reference people can say bad mess about you after they promised to be positive references, that’s why I prefer actual letters.)

    Don’t forget, as 1 door closes another opens!

  • Ebony Maple Leaf

    Forgot to add, that even executives get laid off. Just recently, the CEO of NBC was let go b/c Comcast took over. He has put in a good 25+ years into NBC! The president of CNN was fired. So yeah, no one is immune from the chopping block.

  • That’s why I never put all my eggs in one basket. If your contract is close to expiring (4-6 weeks) and you’ve had no sign that it’s getting renewed, start your job search. If your contract is renewed, great! If not, you’ve started looking elsewhere and hopefully have interviews lined up.

    It is not the end of the world and there will be something better lined up, even if you can’t see it yet.

  • Linda

    Leave with grace and dignity. Don’t make emotional statements that could be construed as a threat, such as: “You’ll be sorry you let me go.”

    Cut all ties immediately and forever. This sounds harsh, especiallhy if your association with the company has been a long one. You may find yourself wondering how your co-worker’s sick mother is or if your boss’s daughter got into that Ivy League college. Resist the temptation to call and ask. You can’t start healing if you still have emotional ties to your old job.