Making The Most Of Being Downsized
You’ve heard the rumors and even saw changes in other departments but never thought it could happen to you. Your performance is where it should be, your colleagues and customers love you, and there is always plenty of work. So it couldn’t happen to you.
Then an awkward call asking you into your manager’s office changes everything.
You’ve been let go.
“It’s not you or your performance”, is what they tell you, “…the company is downsizing, cutting out layers, streamlining…” However it is articulated it still means the one thing, you will soon be out of work.
Numb, disbelief and hurt are words I often hear from clients who have had this happen to them. After initial shock and processing their unexpected situation, they begin to formulate a plan for their new career and life.
During the processing it is often realized they don’t have to look for the exact job they have been doing. This is often the first time, in a very long time, they have considered changing their career and that can feel overwhelming.
Consider several factors when developing your new career plans including:
Financial Standing: Assessing your financial wants and needs is important and a good place to start. Review your current financial standings and your end goals. Do you want to see a change here? Are you looking to increase your salary? Or benefits? Can you afford to look at jobs that might offer a smaller compensation but could be more rewarding? Having a realistic understanding of your financial standing and goals is the best first step.
Outside Factors: The actual job is important, but additional factors to consider are things like your commute, daily travel with the job, extended travel, realistic hours worked each week and additional hours contributed at home. And be sure to review which benefits you must have and those you can live without. Taking the time to address your financial standing and outside factors will be the foundation for the rest of your search.
Job Considerations: Some want to return to what they were doing, in a similar field and same industry. But for others, the possibilities can seem endless and even a little overwhelming. Walking through each possibility will narrow your options and fine tune your clarity on the type of position that will work best for your lifestyle, professional goals and finances.
- Similar Role / Industry - Those that are looking at new career options, keep in mind you can stay in either the same field but look in a different industry, or possibly stay within the same industry but look at a different role. These two choices offer the use of a larger existing network. Use your connections to research roles, expand your reach, and meet the decision makers.
- New Direction – Wanting to make a bigger change will require you to identify strengths and skills you enjoy, that can be used in other roles. Consider skills from past positions that you would like to incorporate as a larger part or main role such as training or customer service. Make a list of skills you most want to use and the types of work you enjoy.
- Business Owner – Has owning your own business or working for yourself been a life-long dream? Maybe you are getting close to retirement and want to consider the possibility of early retirement or working part time while starting your own business. Being an entrepreneur is hard work but can also provide flexibility and be fulfilling.
Take time to objectively review your past experience and current and future career goals to determine the right direction and job for you now and for your future.
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