What would YOU do if you lost your job tomorrow?

job search doodles

I ask this because I may be out of a job by the end of the day.

It seems our company hasn’t been so sexy with their financials and there’s a new sheriff in town. As in, we now have a new CEO and a new set of rules.  In fact, I literally have about 3.4 hours until I meet with her replacement (you’re getting the live action feed, baby!).

Do you remember Office Space and the meeting with the Bobs?  Well, it’s like that.  Only I’m not nearly as charming as Peter Gibbons – nor hypnotized.

So, what does this all mean? Well, I either impress the pants out of this new guy or I pack my bags and enjoy the nice train ride home to unemployment-ville!  Or whatever it’s called when you lose your 9-5 but you still hustle like a mother f’er on the side ;)  (full-time blogger?)

I will tell you this though – I’m not coming out of that room until I’ve laid it all out on the table.  Here’s a list of  things in my artillery bag:

  • The past 4 years of achievements
  • An A-Z breakdown of what I actually DO.
  • An explanation of my work ethic
  • My past and future career goals
  • And, most importantly, HOW I can help our company succeed and why they need me.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned since being in the “real” world, it’s that the company’s goals come first. You can beg and plead and *want* a job until you’re blue in the face, but if you can’t add value to the business there’s really no business in you being there. Now, whether I can pull this off or not is a totally different story.  You better believe I’m gonna give it my all though.

And if I lose my job?  Well, it’s full-speed we go into creating my online empire!  I made a pact with the wife that if I get cut I’m dedicating 3 full months to figuring out how to make a living online.  There will be no applying to new jobs, no attending job fairs (bleh), and DEF. no cutting of the ‘hawk ;) If at the end of these months I come up short, then it’s back to the 9-5 I go! No regrets, no complaints.

So we’ll see what happens. Either way it makes life interesting, right? What would YOU do if you lost your job tomorrow?

(photo by deanmeyersnet)

UPDATE: I didn’t get fired!!!
UPDATE #2: I am now at Happy Hour(s)! :)

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  1. Mrs. Money May 13, 2010 at 7:45 AM

    ((HUGS)) J Money. You will be ok. I’ll keep you in my thoughts today and hope everything works out.

    I think you should rock out your online stuff if it happens!

  2. K May 13, 2010 at 7:58 AM

    I hope it all works out! Good luck with the Bobs. On the bright side, even if you do lose your job, you’re in a position, financially to be able to pursue a completely different path without fear of losing your house or not being able to eat, etc. You get the luxury of time of figure things out.

  3. Jake May 13, 2010 at 8:09 AM

    Good luck man!!! That last line is so important. It’s all about what you do for the company.

  4. E.D. May 13, 2010 at 8:12 AM

    Good luck!

    What would I do? Well, celebrate I guess because I’d be owed 14 weeks of severance and my stock options (worth about $50k) would immediately vest. Plus we have about six months of bare-bones living expenses in the bank.

    The next morning – start looking for a job in Boston or the Bay Area. DH has been unemployed about 8 months and the local job search has sort of stalled.

  5. Bucksome Boomer May 13, 2010 at 8:13 AM

    Whatever happens, I hope it’s the best path for you. I’m impressed that you are going in a plan and focuses on what matters to the audience.

    Did you do the white-board job search illustration? It’s great!

  6. Mike May 13, 2010 at 8:16 AM

    “What’s your favorite song?”

    “Ummm, all of them?”. ;)

  7. Miss Jane May 13, 2010 at 8:16 AM

    Hope all goes well! I’m sure you’ll impress the Bobs :)

    I’ll be in a similar situation by the end of the year, since I do contract work and it’s time to renew our contract. If I did lose this job, I would try to get into something similar. There are a lot of people I’ve networked with in the past 3 years with this job.I’m highly confident in our future as a company, though.

    If I felt really ambitious, I could go back to being a studio/wedding/fashion photographer full time, but in this day (*everyone* is a pro-photographer nowadays ;) ) I’d rather not.

    Also, I have a back up savings fund that should cover 2-3 months at this point (still adding to it).

    Sending good vibes!

  8. Stephen P May 13, 2010 at 8:48 AM

    Remember what I told you a few days ago J


  9. Sallie's Niece May 13, 2010 at 8:55 AM

    Oh no, J! Good luck. I hope it all works out for you.

  10. Young Mogul May 13, 2010 at 9:06 AM

    Like you, I work in an environment that is not stable. Two co-workers were fired last Friday–without warning/prior notice–because of “restructuring”. Yeah, they “restructured” two other people into those positions on yesterday.

    I am currently saving a year’s salary and my plan is to relocate to Texas and job search, hopefully for no longer than 6months. I am a Higher Education Administrator and I want to have 6 months off and be hired at another college by January/Fall Semester 2011. During my time off, I plan to read, blog, write, exercise/bike/yoga…..just get to know myself and figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life. I have an online business and my plan is to make enough money to live off of it, then when I go back to work be able to save my entire salary and be semi-retired in 5 years.

    Also like you, I will HUSSLE like a mofo while unemployed from the day job, so I have no worries and NEVER any regrets.

  11. Nicole at Breaking Even May 13, 2010 at 9:11 AM

    Good luck, J. Thinking about you and sending good vibes your way.

  12. Matt T May 13, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    Good luck! I’m sure it’s agonizing not knowing, but it sounds like you’re prepared to state your case. And having a solid backup plan is great too, even if it doesn’t offer 100% 401(k) matching. Either way you win – you either keep the job or get the opportunity to see if you can make your online “empire” your full-time job (a dream of many).

  13. Impulse Magazine May 13, 2010 at 9:15 AM

    Most people that work in the corporate environment would not have the answer to this question because they have the mindset of they will never get fired or laid off

  14. Jane May 13, 2010 at 9:17 AM

    Good luck! I am so impressed with your cool head under pressure. You know your stuff, J. If I got laid off tomorrow, I guess I’d thank the high heavens for my emergency fund, low fixed expenses, financially stable partner, and the tips I’ve learned from Budgets are Sexy, and high tail it to Starbucks to apply for a job.

  15. jolie May 13, 2010 at 9:20 AM

    Sending positive energy your way!!

  16. duddes02 May 13, 2010 at 9:43 AM

    Good luck J money!!

    Do NOT tell them that their downfall may have come due to their (insane!) 401k match for employees!

  17. tiredofbeingbroke May 13, 2010 at 9:52 AM

    Good luck J. Money. keep us posted.
    My agency is currently sending out layoff letters so I may be in the same situation by months end. It’s about the same time I should get my tax refund. In addition to what I currently have saved I would be ok for a few months.

    The plan would be to look for a job ASAP. I still have debt so I don’t yet have the luxury of chilling. Plus am a lazy blogger. My blog is more of a journal than a side business. I would also try and increase my hours at the part-time gig to at least 25 hrs per week.

  18. Investor Junkie May 13, 2010 at 10:01 AM

    Maybe now is the time to do this blog gig full time?

  19. Josh Smith May 13, 2010 at 10:10 AM

    I have to say I would do the exact same thing. I hope the meeting turns out how you want it. Whether thats a continuation of the 9-5 or the kick start to your empire.

  20. Mrs. Micah May 13, 2010 at 10:28 AM

    I’m rooting for you! I think whichever way you go, you’ll make a success at it. Then you’ll just have to figure out if it’s what you really want or not.


  21. David Damron May 13, 2010 at 10:29 AM

    I am torn. I hope you get what you want but kind of want you to lose your job (sorry if that ends up being a bad omen). I think you have the effort, drive and potential to do whatcha gotta do to make a living online. With the committed 3 months and daily push to do so, I think you could be really successful at making a living online.

    Either way, I support your efforts and hope you get what ya want.

    David Damron
    The Minimalist Path

  22. David Damron May 13, 2010 at 10:30 AM

    P.S. If you do lose your position, You should write a kickass post as to how your bettering of your financial situation a couple years back and your efforts to build a savings has helped the transition.

  23. tom May 13, 2010 at 10:39 AM

    Best of luck to you brother!

    If you’re just a tenth as impressive in person as you are on this blog, you will do just fine!

  24. tom May 13, 2010 at 10:43 AM

    Wait… that didn’t sound right…

    Anyway… you will do awesome. You have a solid game plan with a high performance track record!

    Good luck!!

  25. Samurai May 13, 2010 at 10:54 AM

    J, very best to you mate. Know that whatever happens, there be amazing new adventures ahead of you.

    Your plan to focus on the next 3 months increasing your online income is a great endeavor! I’m sure you will figure a way. We always figure a way!



  26. Brandi May 13, 2010 at 11:27 AM

    Law school all the way baby. I played with the idea while still in college but was ready for a paycheck.

    I still play with the idea now. No doubt about it. I lose my job I will apply to law school that very same day.

    Good luck J!!

  27. Brianna May 13, 2010 at 11:27 AM

    Aw, J. That’s tough news! I hope it works out for you. Please let us know, real-time! :)

  28. Panda Mike May 13, 2010 at 11:28 AM

    Hey J!

    Don’t get me wrong but I hope that you will lose your job. (yeah, now that you are angry at me, you can keep reading my comment to find out why I made such declaration!).

    Based on the following premises:
    #1 You have great potential, you are smart and you don’t seem to be using your talent to the maximum.

    #2 You are pretty good at blogging and you made a great acquisition not so long ago.

    #3 You have a lot of projects in mind but you don’t seem to have enough time to work on them.

    therefore, if you lose your job today, you will have the door of opportunity opening for you wide open to start a full time blogging career.

    Sometimes, I almost hope to lose my job for the same reason. We often chicken-out when we have a regular pay check. We don’t want to lose this security, this comfort. However, chaos is what brings the best of all people.

    If you ever lose your job today, go back and read this comment again, it will make a lot more sense ;-)

    Good luck in any cases!


  29. Wayne May 13, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    Best of luck. Pretty sure they will have made their decision prior to your meeting. If it happens, take some off to regroup and clear the head and decide if you want to go back to the same field or not.

  30. Melissa May 13, 2010 at 11:48 AM

    If I were laid off tomorrow, I would first look at my emergency fund and smile.

    Second, I would pick up the classes needed to finish my MBA by August and apply to a kickass Master’s/PhD. of taxation program.

  31. myfinancialobjectives May 13, 2010 at 11:55 AM

    Wow all the best J! In a weird way, I’m guessing you may actually be looking forward to a three month period where you dedicate all of your efforts to making money online. Why? Because if you are successful, than that is one awesome lifestyle! (If you can manage to secure the other benefits that you get from you employer currently). I may be wrong. But I have often pondered what I would do if I was let go, and I know that I would be in excellent physical shape, and my blog would be a LOT better than it is now!:)

  32. Evan May 13, 2010 at 12:10 PM

    Good Luck Buddy! I am sure it’ll be fine, and if it isn’t I think it is amazing you have such a supportive wife.

  33. J. Money May 13, 2010 at 12:25 PM

    Thanks everyone!!! I am def. excited and scared and really hope I both get the job AND lose the job ;) You can guess which the Mrs hopes for….

    it’s really the health insurance and extra savings I’m worried about in the “online empire” route – but as many of you have mentioned when there’s a will, there’s a way! Regardless, I can promise you that one day I will most def. go on my own….just a matter of when.

    the meeting starts any second!

  34. Suzanne May 13, 2010 at 1:18 PM

    I hope everything works out with the 9-5. From what I can tell you have a bright future here and loving what you do sometimes means more than all the “other” stuff.

    To answer your question: I have no idea! But this post has inspired me to think about my future and career goals!

  35. WR May 13, 2010 at 1:19 PM

    Good luck J. Money!

    This is where the “contingency fund and frugality” rubber really meets the road. You have every right to be scared but you also have every right to be thrilled with the decisions you have made in the recent past.

    If you do get the axe plan on taking a 2 week vacation almost immediately to have some fun and clear your head.


  36. Walt May 13, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    You got this J! Get after it baby! Show Lumberg who’s boss!

  37. Favor May 13, 2010 at 1:37 PM

    Well since I don’t work…..

    I am pursuing an non conventional line of employment, that gives me time to do what I love and I’m a lot happier than a lot of people that I know. You probably heard the saying: when a door closes, God opens a window? or something to that effect…. if you did get fired, live it up like you said. Maybe thats the kick in the butt that you needed to pursue what you’re supposed to be doing anyhow.
    Enjoy your day….

  38. Tim May 13, 2010 at 2:03 PM

    When I lost my job back in 2008, I went full-on Office Space. I took a couple of months off and traveled the world, gave up all semblance of responsibility, and gave myself plenty of time to get my head straight and figure out what my true goals were.

    In the end I realized that I wasn’t satisfied sitting in a cubicle and working 9-5 for the rest of my life, so I tightened my belt, battened the hatches, and all those other metaphors so that I could start pursuing my own ventures.

    Now I work a lot harder than I ever did before, but I’m also A LOT happier.

  39. Tim May 13, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    Oops, almost forgot… GOOD LUCK!!

  40. DD May 13, 2010 at 2:33 PM

    Good Luck J Money!

  41. Melanie May 13, 2010 at 2:56 PM

    Good luck with your meeting. But I bet that it would be bittersweet. Just think all that time to work on your blog is is probably your passion!

    Good luck either way!

  42. Stephan May 13, 2010 at 3:01 PM

    I would go home, relax for the weekend, and then start searching again for a job full time. i have a large emergency fund so i wouldnt be stressing about money, but getting a new job would def be at the top of my list of things to do.

  43. moneymonk May 13, 2010 at 3:33 PM

    That has to be the best part of the favorite!

  44. moneymonk May 13, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    That has to be the best part of the movie!

    An explanation of my work ethic (minus the mentions of blogging & tweeting ;)


    A laid off can be a blessing in disguise

  45. Donna Freedman May 13, 2010 at 3:56 PM

    It’s like this, J:
    I’m sending positive thoughts your way so you don’t lose your job.
    However…I’m also sending positive thoughts that in case you DO lose your job, you will see it as an opportunity to try something new.
    That may feel more like “an opportunity to eat lots of ramen” or “an opportunity to work at 7-Eleven” — and in fact you might have to do those things. For a while. But I believe that you are motivated and smart enough to hustle your butt off until you can make lemonade out of this particular citrus.
    You wouldn’t have chosen to be in this situation. But you may wind up in places you couldn’t have imagined. Ask me how I know this.
    I wish you luck no matter how it turns out. Hit ’em where they ain’t!

  46. Molly On Money May 13, 2010 at 4:05 PM

    Good Luck!
    A year ago the company I worked for downsized and I went from Head Construction Manager to Head of the Cleaning staff within the company. It was unpleasant (I actually cleaned toilets) and not what I wanted at the time but it bought me some time so I could transition when I was ready. I quit my job last week!

  47. Stella May 13, 2010 at 4:24 PM

    Fingers crossed! It sounds like you’ve really prepared well for this–and they’d be stupid to let you go.

  48. AceKen May 13, 2010 at 4:32 PM

    Good luck J!

    He should have no problem. His personality is so magnetic he can’t carry credit cards!

  49. J$ May 13, 2010 at 4:57 PM

    I’m Saved!!! And I’m out drinking! :) And I love you all!!!

  50. Jake May 13, 2010 at 5:13 PM

    Congrats Man!! I will open one up for you later!

  51. miss jane May 13, 2010 at 5:29 PM

    Sweet! *cheers*

  52. doctor S May 13, 2010 at 6:16 PM

    Good luck J. I am sure you will be fine because we all know you got a ton going of you. Whatever happens will serve as a blessing in disguise. If you need to find a new job, you can contemplate making your blogging career even bigger. If you still working there, it can serve as that wake up call that you talk about above, either way you will be fine. You are J. Money!

  53. doctor S May 13, 2010 at 6:17 PM

    Look at my dumbass not reading the bottom comments. Congrats. Here is that wake up call! Time to do it even bigger that before.

  54. Brian May 13, 2010 at 10:13 PM

    Awesome! Now you can keep working on losing that job on your own terms when you want to lose it.

  55. Donna May 13, 2010 at 10:27 PM

    Wow, what a thrill ride for you today! Either way you would be okay because of you have talent, heart, brains and drive (not necessarily in that order, lol). I did lose my job in January, and I will be okay. You will be okay either way. I have faith in you!!!!!!

  56. Financial Samurai May 14, 2010 at 12:28 AM

    Nice work! Now it’s PARTAY TIME!

    As soon as you are done, look for another job and network IMMEDIATELY! It’s always good to look for another job while you have a job due to the leverage.

    Good luck!

  57. Dena May 14, 2010 at 12:48 AM

    That’s GREAT news. I am SO happy for you.I’m glad I read all the way down before posting.It must have been comforting to know that you could take three months off.Having an emergency fund gave you some peace of mind (alright,not a lot) LOL. But I would have been losing it.Congrats J.Enjoy your weekend.

  58. Sandi May 14, 2010 at 1:01 AM

    YEAH!!! So happy for you! Enjoy celebrating :)

  59. eemusings May 14, 2010 at 6:37 AM

    So glad it worked out! I knew it would.

    If I lost my job, I have a list of possible places/contacts to tackle. If none panned out and job ads yielded nothing, I guess I’d cobble together a living from various freelancing gigs and some temp jobs – step up the writing and blogging.

  60. Wayne May 14, 2010 at 11:35 AM

    Saw the update. Good for you. Was there any layoffs with your group/company?

  61. Miss Lissy May 14, 2010 at 11:49 AM

    Well I quit my job suddenly – does that count? Right now I’m just focusing on getting to Korea and finding a job when I get back.

  62. David May 14, 2010 at 12:49 PM

    I hope that things go well for you today!

    I’ve been downsized twice with no warning, so I’ve been there, and the second time put me in a financial bind, since I had recently purchased a house.

    After that I determined that I will work for myself and control my own destiny. :-)

  63. Karmella May 14, 2010 at 1:49 PM

    Just saw the post, and then the update, and then the email re eurotrip – whew!! Glad you’re safe, enjoy the trip!!

  64. Ryan May 14, 2010 at 2:09 PM

    Glad to hear all went well. Now you can enjoy Europe the way it should be enjoyed! :-)

  65. Becky May 14, 2010 at 2:27 PM

    You’re my favorite blogger to read about money. I am excited that you still have a job!!! CONGRATS! I’ve been downsized twice, then I worked as an independent contractor, and now I’m back in the business world. You just need to roll with the punches and realize that God has a plan for you. Thank God you’re on the right track financially. :)

  66. Hank May 14, 2010 at 2:28 PM

    That’s great to hear that everything went well today, man! I would just curl up in bed for a few weeks if I lost my job.

  67. J. Money May 14, 2010 at 11:43 PM

    Man, you all sure know how to make a blogger feel good!!!! THANK YOU x a lot. Seriously, i kept coming back here to read this throughout the day before things got settled and I appreciate each and every one of you taking the time to comment :) You guys rock.

    To answer some of your questions, we actually didn’t have any layoffs (at least yet). Turns out some people were quitting already and those of us remaining are more than happy to take over these new duties. I don’t want to jinx anything here, but it may turn out even better than it was before. So really – no complaints at all :) Except that now I can’t blog full-time…

    BUT, you know what I am going to do? Save-Save-SAVE and put together a game plan to make my actual dreams here come true. This way it’s all on MY terms instead of in the hands of others! It might take me a few extra months, but it’s just a matter of time until I rock it out…and I have you all to thank for it ;) Without you I’d be rambling off into the abyss!

    So thanks again guys. Much love to all y’all, and here’s to a great 2010!

  68. Jazz May 19, 2010 at 1:25 AM

    I actually just lost my job – because I graduated from college and I am therefore ineligible for that job now – and I am just gonna be a bum for a few . I am applying for jobs, but I can realistically i can make at least one car insurance payment before I absolutely have to get a job

  69. J. Money May 19, 2010 at 3:46 PM

    Sorry to here that man, hope you find a great replacement soon :)

  70. Khaleef @KNS Financial May 25, 2010 at 11:37 PM

    I think you had a great plan for your meeting. Also, you have a lot to fall back on as well. I guess this is why you build up an emergency savings account and plan for things like this the best you can!