Redundant but not out!
The potential impact of redundancy should not be played down. It can affect your life in every way, and impacts on your family. But it’s also an opportunity to change things and to move on. I know I would not have had the courage and motivation to set up my own business had this not happened to me, and I also know many people that have used it as an opportunity to change career, move country, and spend more time doing what they want to with their lives. But at the time it is tough.
Here are my strategies for surviving redundancy:
- Don’t splash the cash. Armed with a redundancy payout, feeling sorry for yourself with time on your hands, it is tempting to treat yourself to something to make yourself feel better. It is wise to eke the cash out as long a possible. You might regret spending it if it runs out before your next job appears. Find free things to do to make yourself feel better. Go for a walk, invite a friend round, watch an uplifting film on the television.
- Don’t take it personally. It feels personal, it really does, but remember it is the job that has been made redundant, not you as a person.
- Fight the blues. Don’t have empty days stretching ahead of you, structure your day and keep planning things in. Book in time for job-hunting, time for exercise and time to do the things that will make you feel better, such as meeting friends.
- Access help. See what your local job centre can do, borrow business books from your library, find out about job clubs, and see if there are any local or government programmes to help you back into work. When I set up my business I was amazed at the amount of free training and professional advice I could access through Business Link. You might want to consider using the services of a coach to help you set goals and keep motivated.
- Be persistent. The current climate is tough. There are stories about candidates submitting hundreds of applications before hitting on the next job. Hopefully that won’t be you, but you may need to put in a lot of applications before you are successful. Statistically speaking, you are more likely to be successful if you put in a greater number of quality applications.
- Network! This is so important. Keep in touch with all your connections from your old job. Internet applications such as Linked In are great for this. Put the word out that you are looking for work. If you are recommended for a job, then you are at an advantage. Networking also keeps you in touch with the world of work.
- Be open minded. Think creatively about all the careers that are out there, and consider a change. A lot of skills can be transferred. Spend some time considering all the opportunities that are out there, and what you enjoy doing in life. Don’t rule out ideas that seem wild and wacky, but might actually suit you well.
- Volunteer. This will look good on your CV, keep you active and interacting, and might actually lead to paid work.
- Try to focus on the positive aspects of your redundancy. What are you doing now that you weren’t able to previously? Whether this is spending time with the kids, cooking for the family, or improving your health, consider this a gift.
- Don’t take each rejection as a set back. You won’t be out of work forever, and each rejection is one step closer to your job offer. Try to learn from it, get feedback, and accept it as part of your journey back into employment.
- Imagine you are doing the job before you go for the interview. Really think about how you would be in that role and play it through in your head. This will make you feel and act more confident at interview.
- Stick with it and talk to your support network. Find out what keeps you going, and don’t bottle it up.
As time has moved on, employees seem to be able to invest more in their staff, and I am taking on employee and management coaching, as well as individuals looking for help with managing their careers around their life. I would like to take this as a good sign that things are back on the up!
With redundancy affecting more of us, maybe there is something you can also recommend? Please share it below!
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