By: TSP Blog | @TSProckstars
The two words no employee wants to hear: “You’re fired.” In the first quarter of 2016, over 250,000 working Americans heard a version of this phrase. The social contract between employer and employee guaranteeing long term employment simply does not exist anymore. Unfortunately, most Americans are “at will” and can be laid off at any time, sometimes with little or no notice.
No matter how content you are in your job or how secure you may feel, it’s important to be prepared for your next search to help weather the storm of a surprise layoff. Here are some strategies for taking control of your career — whether you’re expecting a layoff or not.
CONTINUOUSLY UPDATE YOUR RESUME
Tracking your achievements is a strategic move to keep your accomplishments at the top of your mind during a performance review or interview. To avoid dusting off the virtual cobwebs your resume has gathered throughout your career, it’s important to update your resume regularly. Keeping your resume up-to-date will allow you to jump back into the job-searching market much faster than you would expect.
STAY ON TOP OF YOUR PROFESSIONAL NETWORK
It’s important to stay on top of your professional network even when you think you are secure in your current position. Just as you update your resume, take a deeper look at your LinkedIn and make sure all details are easy to find. Additionally, take advantage of those physical networking opportunities. Don’t wait until you're fired to start paying attention to your peers — you never know which connection will help land your next position.
TAKE STOCK OF YOUR FINANCES
Without a steady income, managing your finances should become a top priority. It’s important to revisit your current budget to evaluate how you're spending your money now and how you should be spending it throughout your job hunt. Creating a plan for cutting expenses is vital to eliminating unnecessary spending, and making smart decisions about your finances should help with the burden of searching for your next job.
CONTROL YOUR EMOTIONS
Getting laid off can often lead to a whirlwind of emotions. Some people experience a loss of self-identity, guilt, and in some cases, depression. These emotions are normal, but can lead to a host of other problems. Try to replace negative thoughts with positive ones and your chances for a positive outcome increase because you will be in a better head space. Avoid thinking about the “what ifs” because they're impossible to answer.
STRATEGICALLY SEARCH FOR YOUR NEXT JOB
One perk of being laid off (yes, there can be perks) is that you now have the opportunity to control where you go next. You're no longer tied to a job, company or career path, so take the time to consider what you truly want to do. Once you’ve done so, you can begin searching for your next job. In addition to continuously monitoring job boards, consider connecting with a recruiter. It can also be helpful to follow your favorite companies on social media, as many may choose LinkedIn or Instagram to share they're hiring. Utilizing all avenues available will greatly increase your chances of finding the job that is right for you.
Losing your job can often feel like the worst-case scenario. However, turning this negative to a positive is imperative in finding your new job. It’s crucial to recognize your self-worth, skills and goals, as well as decide if your current career path is the one you want to be on. With a little preparation and a lot of dedication, you may find your new job quicker than expected.