How to Deal with Being Laid Off
Getting laid off is never pleasant, but the way you deal with losing your job makes a big difference to your future. It’s often a difficult time to get through, but handle it the right way and it could end up bringing you interesting new challenges. Here are some tips to help you best cope with the bad news and find new opportunities.
Negotiate Your Exit
Every part of your exit can be negotiated, including your reason for leaving the company. Some employers may be willing to announce your layoff as a resignation, which puts you in a stronger position with recruiters. Once you’ve taken some time to digest the news, you can also negotiate your severance pay, but don’t sign anything until you’re happy with the deal on the table. There’s no real standard for severance pay, so making a personal appeal for an increased payoff is worth trying. If anyone in your family has health problems, you can even ask for extended health benefits.
Don’t Spread the News Right Away
Plan your exit story and make sure you can put a positive spin on it. Stay away from thinking or speaking negatively about the company, your manager(s), or anyone or anything that may have left a bad taste in your mouth. That negativity will carry into your next job search and will only hurt your future opportunities.
If your employer has agreed to make your exit look like a resignation, have a positive reason for resigning. Whether it’s to take on a new challenge or spend more time with family, it’s better not to let people speculate.
Gather Positive References and Contacts
Increase your chances of a positive reference by completing important projects with the same attention to detail as you would if were you staying with the company. Leaving co-workers in the lurch to prove a point will only leave a bad taste in your mouth, and will further any negativity you may be feeling toward the company. Remember these people will be your references and could potentially be co-workers or managers in the future.
Apply For Unemployment
Even if you’re sure you have a new position lined up, file for unemployment just in case. Things do have a chance of falling through, and it takes a few weeks for the paperwork to be processed. It’s best to apply as soon as possible. If it turns out that unemployment benefits are not unneeded, then there’s no harm done.
Set Up Interviews
Don’t wait too long to start looking around for possible openings. Meet with recruiters and contacts at other firms to test the water and see what might be out there for you. It’s always easier to find a new job when you already have one, so take advantage of any time that you may have left at your current position.
Network and Use Social Media
When your exit strategy is crafted and your cover story is established, it’s time to go public about your decision to change jobs. Start off by updating your LinkedIn profile to show that you’re looking for work and put out feelers on any other social networks you use regularly. LinkedIn can be a great resource for making contact with potential colleagues and recruiters, so keep an eye out for opportunities in your network. You’ll also find some targeted job advertisements out there that might be of interest.
Get out into your offline networks as well. Spend time with contacts outside work, attend business functions and networking events, and generally be available for networking opportunities during this time.
Update Your Resume
Take some time to update your resume. When you’re ready to apply to jobs, you will, of course, want to customize different versions to fit the positions you are applying for, but in the meantime it’s good to have a general version updated and ready to go incase anyone asks to see it. Think carefully when adding your last role and try to write about it positively even if you’re still having trouble dealing with your redundancy.
Redundancy can be a stressful time, but it’s important not to let it stop you in your tracks. Don’t focus on the negative; instead, think about your achievements over your time and all the things you’ve learned. You can take something useful away from any employment experience, no matter how it ends and this could be a chance for you to find an even better fit. Redundancy happens to almost everyone at some point in their lives, and there are loads of resources out there to help you through it.
Once your employment comes to an end, stay busy. Get up at the same time in the morning, stick to your exercise routine, stay in touch with family and friends, and carry on networking and looking for your next challenge. Have a routine and keep busy to stay motivated and happy.
By Staff Writer, SimplyJobs