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Odds of Hanging On

Successful hangers-on generally fit one of two profiles. First, you might have landed in an ad agency or media outlet that caters to a growing market, such as a cable channel or online advertising. You've worked hard and done well, building up an impressive client base and steadily growing your business. Your odds of hanging on are good as long as both of these factors remain stable.

The coin's flip side is less shiny, although that ad sales rep is certainly hanging on, too. However, this guy is hanging by his fingernails. He might be in a declining industry, such as newspaper or magazine publication. He might have also mastered the art of skating by with just enough business to keep his job and pay his rent. He would much rather hang with his buddies than beat the streets for ad revenue. This guy is betting that nothing will come along to rock the boat. He might flounder for a while longer, provided no one else comes along who is hungrier for income. On the other hand, his manager could get fed up with this freeloader and fire him tomorrow. Which ad sales rep do you want to be? We’ll give you a few minutes to ponder that toughie.

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