11:03 AM

10 New Rules For The New Workforce . . .

More than three years ago I published some rules for today's workforce and I'm updating them so that people can be somewhat protected from the unpleasant effects of losing a job.

Since most people are expected to go through more than a dozen jobs, and even several career changes, throughout their life, I think the following rules are more than necessary:

- Use your own cell phone/number for business.

Don't use a company provided cell phone because if you lose your job you lose your number, and you lose your business contacts. Your employer can pay your cell phone expenses.

- Use your own email address for business.

Again, you want to be able to be reachable by your business contacts and vice versa, if you lose your job.

- Carry your own health insurance.

It's a lot less expensive than Cobra, and it means you aren't stuck in a job that makes you sick because of the health insurance. Again, some employers will give you a credit towards your health insurance costs or you can negotiate for a benefit when accepting a job. Employers might even choose someone with their own insurance over someone else, since healthcare is such a huge burden for a lot of businesses.

I got some additional tips from fellow bloggers. Mitch Ratcliffe wrote:

- Incorporate and work on contract rather than as an employee.

This allows you to negotiate the same kind of stock compensation while allowing you to keep your business costs, even the ones you can't get compensated for at work, on your own taxes while increasing the flexibility you have as a working person.

- Carry and use your own hardware, building tech expenses into your compensation.

This prevents lock-in to a job through access to technology. Sure, you may have to work with a less impressive laptop, but you're also forced to think more like the people who really buy computers, software, services and so forth.

From Neville Hobson at NevOn:

- Create a blog and establish your personal presence in the new marketplace

In this new age of global inter-connectivity, linking and influence, a blog is a prerequisite if you want to build your own credibility, be found easily and connect with others. Forget the static website. Forget the fancy brochure. Do a blog. It works - I speak from personal experience.

- Join a business network like LinkedIn or OpenBC

However you actively use these or not, they can help establish your individual credibility and provide avenues of contact with others for mutual benefit.

Today I would add:

- Join Facebook

Facebook has become as important as LinkedIn in certain ways. It is a good way to establish your online identity - both professional and personal. It makes it easy to stay in touch with people and contacts even if jobs and addresses change.

- Join Twitter

Twitter is another good way to establish a personal and professional presence. And it rewards those that share good information and insights. Plus, sometimes people post about job openings before they are advertised elsewhere.

Rule number ten is ...

What do you think it should be?