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Layoffs -- how low can we go?

   The latest news that Bennigans closed is pretty darn depressing. That means 9,000 more workers without jobs. Through July, companies have announced 18,242 job cuts due to bankruptcy proceedings, 160 percent more than the 7,012 bankruptcy-related job cuts announced in all of 2007, according to outplacement firm, Challenger, Grey & Christmas.  I'll tell you what business is booming right now: suicide counseling.

    And, some workers who thought part-time work sounded glamorous just got a rude awakening. Part time isn't so great when you're forced into it. The New York Times reported that 3.7 million workers have seen their full-time positions reduced to part-time due to the weakening economy.  That is the highest number since the government began tracking over 25 years ago. 

   Chin up, it's time to get creative. It's hard to balance work and life when there's one side of the equation mission. So, how can you re-invent yourself? What opportunities exist today? First, look at Challenger's guidebook for how to find a job in an economic downturn. Click here to view it.

  Next, consider an entrepreneurial venture: All it takes it a good idea (and some funding to pull it off?) Author Stacie Berdan just told me about SpanishPod, an online Spanish service, teaching Spanish by publishing daily lessons by podcast, creating an ever-growing archive of lessons listeners can have access to.  Spanish students can download their lessons to their iPods and listen on-the-go, or listen to the same lessons at the website SpanishPod.com, where they can take advantage of study tools to help review dialogs and vocabulary. Great idea isn't it? Wish you had thought of it? Start brainstorming!