10 Things to Do if You're Laid Off
Being downsized, dismissed,
let go of or laid off is never easy. No matter how much information we're
privy to regarding our company or industry, it's always a shock when we're
the casualty. Here are 10 things to do should this happen to you.
Experience the shock, hurt
and anger that you're experiencing but don't get stuck in the feelings.
Instead, focus on the future and what it is you most want and need.
Mobilize your resources.
List every idea you have about what you think you'll need to do. Get the
ideas out of your brain and onto paper. This will help you with brainstorming,
with strategizing and with mobilizing your resources. Immediate action
is required; mobilization is the step preceding action.
3. Think people
List all the people you know.
Make a plan about how you'll approach them, and for what purpose. How will
you explain your situation to people, and what is it that you'll be asking
for? Get clear about this last point so your communication with them is
4. Think functions
and transferable skills
Think about the skills and
talents you've tapped into in previous jobs. Creatively brainstorm what
jobs would easily incorporate these transferable skills. Educators and
social workers have successfully transferred their communication skills
into corporate training positions, and financial planners have successfully
entered other industries as analysts or educators. Successful sales people
frequently job hop industries - their communication skills transcend the
product or industry.
Immediately update and upgrade
your resume. Have your resume clearly represent your personal best. Make
sure that the reader has no doubt about how well you'd perform - have your
resume express the best of who you are! This means that impeccability matters!
Present yourself professionally and in a style that both flatters and communicates
who you are. Give people a reason to hire you! If you don't effectively
represent or promote yourself, why should a potential employer think that
you'd effectively represent or promote their product?
6. Maximize resource
Don't dismiss newspaper ads
because you've heard that most people don't get jobs through the newspaper.
Think creatively about what resources are available to you and utilize
them! Besides networking and the newspaper classifieds, there are professional
organizations, alumni services, private and public employment offices.
Look around your community for other available resources.
7. Focus on your
You're concerned about your
future and worried about your income. While you might feel powerless and
fearful or anxious about your lack of control, make a commitment to live
from your strengths and not from fear. Identify your strengths and make
a conscious decision to live from them - observe when you're not. The future
will unfold in unforeseen ways when you apply and integrate this concept
into your life. Work to maintain your self-confidence while being open
to others' contributions. List on a piece of paper the qualities that make
you unique and special - list your strengths, talents and skills. Look
at the list daily, and add to it when new insights about your strengths
emerge. If YOU don't believe in yourself, no one else will. Focus on your
8. Create a personal
board of directors
Consider creating your very
own personal board of advisors. Apply Tom Peters' concept "the brand you"
to your life - run your life as you would a business. Create a personal
board of advisors who will contribute to your success. Invite people you
respect and who have complementary perspectives, approaches and skills.
Remember, we learn more from
those who are different than from those who are similar. Differences of
opinion create a more solid product. When others challenge you, know that
they're actually helping to expand your vision. Let others contribute to
you. Utilizing your very own personal board of directors will help you
get beyond your blind spots.
9. Invest in yourself!
Investing time and resources
into your personal and professional development is well worth the effort
- regardless of your employment status. Structure personal/professional
development into your schedule on an on-going basis. Consider it a necessary
ingredient for success. The benefits will far exceed the investment.
Don't let logistics or fear
that your dream is crazy or impossible stop you from visioning the future!
There's always learning in the listening - so listen to your dreams. Identify
the essence of what most excites you. Creatively brainstorm how you can
live from that space more frequently, as the more you do, the more powerfully
you'll generate the future you now only dream about.
The layoff may be a blessing
in disguise. What is the Universe trying to tell you? Is this a wake up
call of some kind? You might unknowingly be on a path of personal discovery
- let the layoff be the catalyst for self-discovery and powerful actions!
Perhaps it IS time to move on to something more challenging and exciting.
Be open and listen. There
may be a lesson and an opportunity in this for you.
here to find a career you can be passionate about