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Sometimes layoffs come out of the blue, it's true, but you can usually pick up on a few changes around the office first.

If you see signs that the budget is tightening, there are hiring freezes, or other people are being let go, that's always a tip off. You should be sure to follow any news stories about the organization, if it's high profile, or the industry as a whole, says Lita Epstein, author of Surviving a Layoff: A Week-by-Week Guide to Getting Your Life Back Together. "If they are saying that the industry is facing cut backs, or a lot of companies in the same industry are losing money, you know that there will most likely be layoffs."

One sign that they might be gunning for you in particular is if your workload gets significantly lighter.

If you start to notice things like this, it never hurts to put your feelers out and see who's hiring. Talk to people, including both friends and recruiters, and see what your options are.
Please note: This is general information and is not intended to be legal advice. You should consult with your own financial advisor before making any major financial decisions, including investments or changes to your portfolio, and a qualified legal professional before executing any legal documents or taking any legal action. Harpo Productions, Inc., OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Discovery Communications LLC and their affiliated companies and entities are not responsible for any losses, damages or claims that may result from your financial or legal decisions.

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