What To Do When Getting Laid Off

June 7, 2017

Aloud Blog YoProIn the fall of 2016, there were talks that my position might be eliminated due to potential downsizing in the company. As a small to medium sized family business, it wasn’t anything that I didn’t expect. But it wasn’t until the day after Christmas that the owner announced that the downsizing would take place after the New Year. Worried about my future, I was more angry than upset — how could this happen right after the holidays? Why me?

After clearing my desk of personal belongings, I said goodbye to my colleagues and went on my way. In a way I felt relief, but I was also hurt and confused. Rather than retreating into myself, I immediately began interviewing with temp agencies and PR firms. This was the worst thing I could have done, not because I set unrealistic expectations, but because I did not take the time to clear my mind and breathe.

Coping with layoffs is different for everyone, but there are some things that I did to bounce back — and some steps that I wish I could go back and do.

Breathe

Let your mind go and let it unwind. Clear your head and start fresh.

Rework Your Budget

Take a look at your bank account and next paycheck (include ½ of your severance, if any). Be sure to pay your rent and major bills as soon as possible, so that you can focus your energy on your job search (and maybe a part-time job).

Meet with Career Counselors

Take a look at your resume and adjust it to the present. And as a NYWICI member, you are eligible for a free career consultation with our coaches.

Make a List of Potential Job Roles

You want your next move to be a good one, so don’t jump into anything too soon. What did you like/not like about your previous job? How has your industry changed? This is important when applying for a new job.

Baby-Steps

While some might be able to find a new job in no time, others need more time. And after numerous rejections (a lot of companies said I was overqualified), I began working retail to generate income and took the time to focus on what I wanted in my next role.

I learned that finding work is time-consuming and can be a bumpy-road. It’s been three months since I was laid off, and I’ve found myself working part-time jobs, one in Visual Merchandising and another as a temporary Social Media Coordinator. Sometimes we have to make sacrifices and start all over, but in the end it’ll be worth it. And if you decide to take on a few freelance gigs, remember that these are definite resume enhancements — experience is always key!

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Tamara Bonet
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