For everyone who breathed a sigh of relief that it was a new year and your job was secure, the lay off party ain’t over yet.

Friday hailed several new rounds of law firm layoffs, from LA-based Manatt, to Blank Rome and Akin Gump.

My take is that we will continue to see “right-sizing” throughout the year. Many of these decisions will be necessary to the health and future of a firm, others will be made to preserve the Profits Per Equity Partner (PPEP). Time will tell, especially in May when the new AmLaw 100 ranks are released.

In a statement, Blank Rome said the cuts were necessary to adjust the firm’s attorney and staff headcounts to be in line with the current and anticipated needs of its clients.

“These are purely economic decisions — this is a group of talented attorneys and staff who have made valuable contributions to our firm,” the statement continued. “We have not taken these decisions lightly, and while Blank Rome remains in strong financial condition having concluded a satisfactory year in 2008, we are not immune to the global economic downturn. Like any other business, we must assess and respond to the economic realities and the plain fact that we are in the midst of a recession, and that is what we have done.”

So what are you going to do, TODAY, to inoculate yourself in case your firm ends up on the “watch” list? For those new to The Legal Watercooler, I write extensively on how it is our responsibility to market ourselves and our careers on a daily basis.

I will complete my 5-part “Marketing Me” series this week with “My 4-point 2.0 Plan” and “Why it’s all worth it.” In the meantime, here are quick links to “With a plan and a purpose,” “Career v. Job,” and “When do you find the time.”