As inflation grows higher, many are concerned that the threat of a recession is near. On TikTok, a former middle manager says he has been a manager through two layoffs and gives advice on when or how to expect layoffs or what to do if you are laid off. The creator, Phong Thieu and goes by Phong, has over 2 million likes on TikTok as he gives users tips on things like code or technology, but also advice in the workplace that can be helpful. In one video, he remains as blunt as possible with his followers and says that by the time layoffs reach you, it is not much you can do. But, he also gives advice on how to see layoffs coming in order to be as best prepared as possible. “I’ve been through a dozen layoffs and reorgs in my career. It’s not fun, especially if you don’t get to decide who stays/goes on your team,” one person noted.
As inflation increases, some are worried that a recession is near. According to Forbes, a recession is a “significant decline in economic activity that lasts for months or even years.” Although unemployment is low, some worry due to the high inflation rate and the increased interest rates will cause a recession, which can impact layoffs. Recently, Cnn reported that “On Wednesday, two US real estate companies that flourished in the pandemic era of low mortgage rates and ravenous demand, announced layoffs. Redfin (RDFN), which went on a hiring binge in recent years and employed nearly 6,500 people as of December, is cutting 8% of its staff.” Other places as well have plans to reduce hirings, such as Spotify, and companies like StitchFix and Carvana plan on also making cuts. Although some economists assure people that a recession is not “inevitable” as some people believe, many remain fearful.
So, it is not a surprise that a TikToker discussing layoffs and how to prepare for them performed well on the app. With over 190 thousand views on what to do if you are laid off, many were eager to begin to prepare for the worst. In one video, Phong recommends not asking why if you are laid off, as managers are often trained to avoid this question entirely. He also says to find a lawyer, which can often help people get a few weeks of severance pay to help as people look for jobs and file for unemployment as soon as possible.
He also gives tips on what makes someone less likely to be laid off, like characteristics like being reliable, proactiveness, and your impact on the company or people around you. Although these are not foolproof or guaranteed, some felt that this would at least give them something to strive for. “Thank you for this series. I’m a middle manager and now seeing the signs at my company and have felt a layoff has been coming for a while,” one person noted. Although the talk of recession and layoffs is never fun, many felt grateful to hear another side and gain insight on how to be as prepared as possible.