Project Management

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Topics: Risk Management
New risk
I've run into a major risk. I've been a PM at an airline my entire adult life. People have stopped flying and my job is at risk. How would you respond to that risk?
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Dear Joshua,
I would accept a job loss situation as it is but utilize the time thereby given to me (could be of varying lengths) to gainfully spend that on up-skilling and come back strong. I believe project management is universally required in all industries and you do not have to stick to something that has been the major part of your working career. You could apply the same working knowledge and skill to another area, with the premise that you are looking for new things to do in life.
Joshua, my advice would be

1. take stock, what are your assets in terms of knowledge, certifications, experience and also on a networking side (which communities are you a member of)
make sure you set a growth mindset for yourself, maybe get a mentor

2. set a short term target to build a second income stream and/or new network by using your current assets - could also be volunteer work - one purpose is just to demonstrate to yourself you can do new stuff

3. set a long term target and build assets to reach it, develop resilience by improving these 6 characteristics of your asset system
- modularity
- redundance
- diversity
- adaptability to changes
- embeddedness in the environment
- prudence / mindfulness

I bet you are in the current situation because you did not show many of these characteristics.

Wish you all the best, Thomas.
There is impossible to answer to the question without context, external and internal. My friends that are working in Aerolineas Argentinas are facing a totally different situation than other people which are working in other airlines located in other countries. But I faced situations like that for example because I worked in a consulting firm and I was assigned from years as main consultant into an airline and then into an airport. So, my personal way of thinking and behave, always, was following in the reality what agile (real agile, not agile in software) and agility state: be prepare for unexpected and unplanned changes.
Joshua -

A lot will also depend on your flexibility. Joyjyoti is providing ideas around domain shift, Thomas is looking at broadening your horizon for working but another option is to stay within your domain and change location.

Yes, North American airlines are suffering but there may be opportunities in other parts of the world if you are willing to (temporarily) relocate.

The danger in shifting domains is that you are given up the competitive advantage you enjoy in terms of the deep knowledge you've gained in your current domain so make sure there are truly no options to continue to leverage that.

Few good suggestions already mentioned by others. I would agree to them.
It is very important to be competitive and be the best for keeping yourself up than others.
As Kiron mentioned it is always good to stick to domain as it gives you that competitive advantage.
At the same time a it would be good to prepare yourself for changes and focus on skills which may help to give you that competitive advantage while looking for change.
I believe it is time to set back & give yourself time to think of the situation differently, you may consider the following:
* Make a SWOT analysis of yourself & the environment around you to come up with ideas that may serve in getting you out of this situation.
* What about discussing the issue with your peers who may be facing the same fate.
* What about starting your own business solely or through partnership.
* Check government policies regarding investing in start-ups, you may get a fund through government's programs & start your own business.
My fellow colleagues provided very valuable feedback. I always believe that you should diversify and never put your eggs in one basket.

The world is evolving fast, so we need to be able to inspect and adapt. It’s never too late to change a career path and I’ve recently issued a blog on my website about this.

I suggest, if you don’t already have, to start looking at strengthening your portfolio by doing some certifications related to your current work or that you could use for any industry like change management, project management and so on. You could also take a course in a new field of interest to you.

In your case, if you didn’t already prepare, then it means you accepted the risk initially and now that the risk probability increased, you have to change the planning to Mitigation and start planning your next steps which will cost some money but will hopefully have good ROI in short term.


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