By Steven Zipkoff
Reviewed by Gary W. Silverman, CFP®
Gary Silverman owns a fee-only financial planning firm in Wichita Falls, Texas. He is the editor of the financial newsletter Personal Money Planning, writes the newspaper columns Your Money and Biz2Biz, and hosts the cable talk show, Money Cent$. Contact him at www.PersonalMoneyPlanning.com.
I don't know about you, but over the last couple of years, more than 5 percent of my non-retired clients lost their jobs. Dealing with it has become one of mine. Steven Zipkoff has been there, having gone through period of unemployment himself.
As he says in the preface: I was scared to death when I realized that the money I had saved for other purposes-a family vacation, a new car, retirement, etc.-now had to be used to survive. And over and over again, the worst feeling of all, "What if I can't find a job?"
Zipkoff is currently president of Zipkoff Solutions, a management education company. But you already know him from his earlier work. He's the guy who developed the "We Do Chicken Right" marketing strategy for KFC and created the "Value Menu."
Yet, those and other successes didn't keep him from being laid-off, downsized, right-sized and fired. (No wonder he now works for himself.) Through it all, he did not lose his sense of humor. In The Seven Stages of Successful Unemployment, Zipkoff strives to help the reader get a job and minimize the depression and worry that unemployment causes.
His seven steps are:
- Putting up a positive front
- Accepting the fact
- Developing a resume
- Receiving your unemployment benefits
- Creating a plan
- Making it happen
Through the book, Zipkoff weaves these seven stages together with six lessons he learned the hard way. His personal experiences give ample illustrations; ones the reader will immediately identify with ... both the thrills and the agonies.
Is any of what he talks about new? Not really. But it's all there, in a light, sometimes humorous, and very readable tone. It's the type of information your unemployed (or almost unemployed) friends and clients need to hear, written in a way that they will be willing to hear it.
Get a copy, read it for yourself, and then get more for the people around you who are hurting in this economy.
Oh, and those lessons he learned? They include:
- Prepare for the worst.
- Humor will get you through anything.
- Who you know is still more important than what you know.
- Don't get pigeon-holed.
- Give and you shall receive.
I'm thinking that these came in handy for most of us advisers over the last couple of years.
First Flight Books (2004)
$20 at www.zipkoffsolutions.com