In today’s tough economic times, with all the layoffs and closures that are taking place, it’s hard to keep your existing job, let alone think of finding a new one if you have the misfortune to be let go. If you think that it’s only the people who have lost their jobs who are going through a large amount of stress, it’s not true; in fact, the ones who are still employed live in constant fear of being laid off. If you want to keep your job and ensure that you get a steady salary, here are 5 ideas to keep your job:

• Prove your worth through your work: When you continue to do your work to the best of your ability and prove to your employers that they have more to lose by letting you go than by keeping you on. When you produce quality work that is worthy of appreciation, when you’re a model employee who does not cause too much strife at the office or trouble in any other way, there is no way you are going to be the first to get laid off in a crunch situation.

• Don’t raise your voice: Even if there are things that don’t please you at work, be patient and stay silent for some time. Do not raise your voice, especially against the management and their policies and rules. You may think you’re a hero for bringing injustices to the notice of your boss, but when times are tough, it’s best to maintain a low profile and go about your job without too much fuss.

• Don’t give your boss reasons to fire you: Be very careful not to slip up, either at work or in any other aspect. If you take too many days off work, come in to work late and/or leave early, spend too much time goofing off at the office, and in general do other things that may be construed as insubordination and a devil-may-care attitude, you will most likely be the first to go when employees have to be laid off.

• Be willing to take a pay cut: It may be difficult to swallow, but you must be willing to trade a pay cut in return for keeping your job if that is the only way you get to do so. You can quit once you find a new job, but till then, hold on to what you have because a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

• Don’t suck up to the boss: You will be tempted to do this in an effort to keep your job, but avoid the tendency to do so. Your employer will see right through you and your credibility takes a flying leap out the window. You will be perceived as a toady, someone willing to demean themselves to retain their job.

This guest post was contributed by Donna Mitchell, who regularly writes on the topic of paralegal schools online. She welcomes your comments and questions at her email address: donna.mitchell at rediffmail.com