Well, the new unemployment number is out today, and it's a tough one: 533,000 jobs lost in November, which is the most since before I entered the workforce.? Sandy Kemsley just posted on building your social network before you get laid off - and I couldn't agree more with what she wrote.? I'll re-emphasize a couple points here...
1.? Facebook is not for professional networking (Its fun, but that's not the same thing!).? In fact, as far as I'm concerned, for most white-collar workers, the only social networking services worth their salt are LinkedIn and Plaxo (Plaxo does a good job of keeping your contact information up to date, and keeping others' contact information up to date in your database, but I don't think it is a good site for networking, compared to LinkedIn).
2.? Don't wait til you get laid off to start this process.
3.? It doesn't take too much time, but it IS an investment.? There's no immediate payoff, but it can pay off years down the road, even if it doesn't pay off next month.
4.? It may allow you to help someone else find a job.? Be a good friend, help out!
If you do get laid off, look for smaller startup companies that might need help but can't commit to hiring full-time - perhaps they'll take some help on a contract basis to get them through a busy season, and that might be just the bridge you need to get a good full-time job.? Be creative and be flexible and you may just find a job, even in this environment.