Career Guide

I’m Sorry, Your Position Has Been Eliminated

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[Part III of IV]

These days, if you walk into your boss’ office and Human Resources is there as well, it may be time for a deep breath. This could be it – you’ve been laid off. Ouch.

You’re not alone. In fact, as of December 1, you joined 1.2 million other Americans who lost their jobs this year. But after the initial shock, it’s time to regroup. Life isn’t over. In fact, almost all of us know someone who ended up in a position they liked even better after losing a job. With the right approach, that can be you.

Here are five suggestions for moving on to something better:

  1. Lean on your network. Family, friends—who makes you feel good? This is the time to surround yourself with support. 
  2. Say goodbye nicely. Send an email or hand-written note with your new contact information to those with whom you worked. Try to include a positive point or two about your time with the organization.  
  3. Do something good for yourself every single day. You’re hurting and you’re going to have to do things you may not particularly enjoy—perhaps cutting back on expenses and going through all of the administrative work involved in seeking employment. That’s why it’s really important to plan something for yourself every day that you enjoy and can anticipate. It may be as simple as spending 30 minutes reading a novel. Or working out.  Take care of yourself so you have the energy to do the other things that might not feel so good.
  4. Never badmouth your former employer. Resist the temptation of complaining about how bad things had become or the unfairness of the decisions that were made. Take the high road and if you need to vent, count on that support network in Tip #1 above.
  5. Tell everyone you’re looking for a new position and I mean EVERYONE. You never know from where a job lead might come. Think outside of your professional network and talk about your job search with neighbors and acquaintances. They just might “know someone who knows someone” that leads to your next chapter.

By Jenny Schade, president, JRS Consulting. JRS Consulting helps organizations dramatically increase attraction among customers and employees. Jenny Schade has interviewed more than 1,000 employees while guiding organizations through turbulent change. Get more tips from the free JRS newsletter.

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Jenny Schade

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