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7 Signs Your Job May Be In Danger

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, statements or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

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While some signs of job troubles are fairly obvious (you’re called in for an impromptu review that doesn’t go well, or you’re given a verbal or written warning), there are others that might go unnoticed to the untrained eye. Of course picking up on the subtle clues that your higher-ups are less than satisfied with your work can mean the difference between fixing the mistakes in time and starting a brand new job search.

We checked in with some experts for what they would consider are the subtle signs that someone should be wary of how their job performance is going — and perhaps start making some moves to up their game.

Sign 1: Your boss has to verbally ask for your input

Why it could be a bad sign: To the untrained eye, your boss valuing your input is a good thing — and it is a good thing! — but she shouldn’t have to ask for it. “If you like to sit on the peripheral chairs in meetings and do not often speak up, and if your colleagues or boss subtly nudge you to sit in the so-called central chair or if people are often asking you for your opinion in meetings, it may be time to step up your game,” says Gia Ganesh, a career coach and founder of GiaGanesh.com. Instead of forcing your boss to wonder if you have the potential to say and contribute more, prove it by impressing her with you know-how before she even has to ask.

Sign 2: Your boss has changed the way she treats you socially

Why it could be a bad sign: It’s an obvious bad sign if you’re suddenly looked over for new projects, clients or tasks that in the past you would have always been considered to take the lead on, but it’s also important to pay attention to the way your boss and key co-workers are treating you in general. If they’re not being as social, friendly or cordial as they have been in the past, it may be time to make some changes. “If your boss avoids having meaningful conversations with you about the status of your projects or quality of work, or even to engage in what had been in the past light social discussions, these are signs,” says Fred R. Cooper, founder/managing partner of Compass HR Consulting, LLC. If you find yourself dealing with this type of situation, having a frank, potentially uncomfortable conversation with your supervisor may help salvage your relationships, as well as provide a blueprint for future success and a road map for expectations on both sides moving forward.

Sign 3: You suddenly find yourself being micromanaged

Why it could be a bad sign: Generally it’s a good sign when your boss has enough confidence in your skills to allow you to handle your own projects and deadlines without any additional help. “If your boss is micromanaging you with frequent meetings and overly-detailed comments on your work, it could mean that he or she doesn’t trust you to operate independently,” says Sam McIntire, founder of online learning platform Deskbright. If this happens, McIntire suggests having a transparent conversation with your manager about what aspects of your work you can improve, and what skills and output you need to demonstrate in order to earn autonomy and self-direction. “Your goal should be for your manager to delegate tasks to you and trust that you’ll competently execute them with minimal direction.”

Sign 4: Your boss is unaware of some of your talents

Why it could be a bad sign: If you’ve taken certain courses or classes or had particular experience in a past job that would really come in handy in your current gig, you need to speak up about that. “If you hear from your boss, ‘I had no idea that you did that or know that,’ in reference to some professional work, skill, talent or knowledge, it means you are not tooting your horn enough and it may be another sign to step up your career game,” says Ganesh.

Sign 5: You can’t remember the last time your boss came to you with a time-sensitive issue

Why it could be a bad sign: When there is an urgent, fire-drill type of task that needs doing, does your boss come to you to complete it? If not, it could be that he doesn’t consider you a go-to person. “Ultimately, being an action-oriented problem solver and leader is what is most likely to move your career forward,” says Mike McRitchie, a career and small business strategist. So the next time you see your boss struggling to get something done on a tight deadline, offer to take on the task, or at least check in to see how you can help out — then make your work really stand out.

Sign 6: Your boss has no idea what you’re working on

Why it could be a bad sign: While a little autonomy is a good thing, it’s still essential that your boss knows and understands the value you deliver to the office every single day. “Being a silent giant is not a good place to be,” says Kristi Daniels, an executive career coach and founder of Thrive 9 to 5, LLC. “Even if they’re focused on other priorities, make sure your manager knows your contribution to the team and the organization.”

Sign 7: Your boss or manager describes you in terms that don’t align with how you see yourself

Why it could be a bad sign: Obviously one of the more important aspects of your job is that both you and your boss agree on what your objectives and goals are within your position — if you don’t, that is a problem. “If you don’t brand yourself, someone else will,” Daniels said. “You need to actively demonstrate and share your skills, passions and what you have to offer. You teach others how to talk about you.”

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Cheryl Lock
Cheryl Lock |

Cheryl Lock is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Cheryl at [email protected]

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Survey: Americans Fear the Stock Market More Than They Love Retirement

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, statements or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Gains and losses in the stock market can provoke a wide range of emotional responses, from jumping for joy to falling into a fetal position. But a recent MagnifyMoney survey found 60% of Americans feel anxiety when they think about investing in the market, and that reluctance to embrace investing may be costing them when it comes to retirement savings. Let’s take a look at why Americans dread the stock market and how they can face up to their fears.

Survey says people fear stock market crashes

The biggest reason Americans don’t like the stock market is because they are afraid they’ll lose their money in a market downturn or a crash. Our survey found that almost 61% of Americans hesitate to invest in the stock market because of a potential crash. Not every demographic feels that anxiety equally: Almost 72% of millennials worry about a crash, compared with only 56% of Gen Xers and 55% of baby boomers, despite the fact that the younger millennials have more time to absorb and make up for losses in the market.

Beyond age, gender also plays a role in shaping a person’s investing strategies. Our survey found that 59% of men were willing to accept the risk of losing money in the market if it gave them the possibility of a big windfall, while 58% of women didn’t think the loss of any money was worth investing in the market. Women also worry more about making a mistake with their investment decisions — 63% of women versus 53% of men — and are less likely to have an investment account — 44% of women have accounts versus 60% of men.

According to our survey at MagnifyMoney, more than half of the respondents have an investment account, and most of them (67%) have one thanks to their employer.

Why you need to invest in the stock market

Movies such as The Wolf of Wall Street and The Big Short may give the impression that the stock market is the exclusive playground of the privileged looking to turn their millions into billions. But the modern retirement savings landscape — specifically the shift from companies offering pension plans with guaranteed lifelong income, to employer matches on private investment accounts — makes investing in the stock market a necessity for anyone hoping to retire one day.

“Unless you are a Kardashian or the founder of a tech startup, very few people will be able to save enough money to have a secure financial future without at least some exposure to investments,” said David Rae, a CFP based in Los Angeles.

It’s not a coincidence that Americans who don’t invest in the stock market also lag woefully behind on their retirement savings. Less than half of the country’s women have an investment account, and only 36% of them report feeling on-track with their retirement savings, according to a 2018 study by Prudential. And that sense of falling behind isn’t just a feeling — a separate survey from Student Loan Hero, which like MagnifyMoney, is also owned by LendingTree, found women have saved on average only half as much as men.

Millennials who shun the stock market risk seeing their retirement dreams slip away. A report from the nonprofit National Institute on Retirement Security found that millennials as a whole have “earned about 20% less in wages, are less likely to own a home, and have accumulated about half of the wealth of their parents at the same stage in their lives.” A separate study from MagnifyMoney shows just how far this generation has to go, reporting a median savings of $23,000, instead of the $112,000 many financial experts would recommend.

In short, unless you have a trust fund or a billion-dollar idea, you can’t really afford to ignore the benefits of compound interest granted by investing and just store all of their money away in a deposit account, where inflation will almost certainly eat away most of its purchasing power over time.

How to get over the fear of investing

The thought of investing may cause a sinking feeling in most people’s stomachs, but the following advice should calm your nerves when it comes to putting money to work in the stock market.

Don’t panic when the market does

If your worst fears about the stock market are realized in the form of a recession or crash, one surefire way to make things worse is to dump all your stocks and leave the market. “Sticking to your portfolio, whether times are good or bad, is usually the right choice,” said Rae. “Buying and selling without a plan is a recipe for crappy investment returns.” Fortunately, the MagnifyMoney survey found that almost half (49%) of respondents plan to do nothing if a recession hits.

While it’s good so many people aren’t planning to ghost during a bear market, you could also start thinking of a recession as a chance to snag stocks on the cheap. “A recession is like a big sale on stocks that only comes along every few years,” said Rae. “Look to increase your contributions to your investment accounts, if you can.”

Act your age with your investments

Not only are the young blessed with wrinkle-free skin and all of their hair, but they also have the ability to maximize the return on their investments thanks to the magic of compound interest. Because time is on their side, they can afford to allocate more of their savings in stocks — where risks and rewards are both greater — than in lower-risk, lower-return bond markets, money market accounts, savings accounts or other deposit accounts.

As you get older and wiser, and closer to the big retirement date, you should rethink the makeup of your portfolio, shifting more investments to safer asset classes and away from riskier stocks. This way if the market suffers a downturn, you’re be less exposed to the damage and better able to weather the storm until good times are here again.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

You may think you need to be rich before you need to hire a financial advisor, but there’s nothing further from the truth. Advisors aren’t free, and even the low-fee ones will charge a commission that ultimately comes from your savings, but the peace of mind and clarity you gain about your investments can be worth the money. One rule of thumb you might consider is to use a robo-advisor if you have less than $100,000 in investable assets, and pony up for a real live human advisor once your investments break six figures.

The time to invest in the market is now

Most Americans don’t like the stock market, but investing is almost a requirement if you want to retire. Fortunately, investing doesn’t have to be so scary and by taking some time to learn the basics, you’ll be well on your way toward celebrating your golden years in financial security.

Methodology

MagnifyMoney by LendingTree commissioned Qualtrics to conduct an online survey of 1,049 Americans, with the sample base proportioned to represent the general population. The survey was fielded May 13-15, 2019. Generations are defined as follows:

  • Millennials are ages 22-37
  • Generation Xers are ages 38-53
  • Baby Boomers are ages 54-72

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

James Ellis
James Ellis |

James Ellis is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email James here

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