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166 | You just got laid off. Now what? – Elizabeth Gross, Founder, Job Search Divas

Episode 166 is live! This week, we talk with Elizabeth Gross in Boston, Massachusetts.

Elizabeth is the Founder of Job Search Divas, where she helps job seekers through their job search journey. Elizabeth has extensive experience at a number of companies, including Monster, Bank of America, and Constant Contact.

On today’s episode, Elizabeth shares:

  • The first thing you should do when you’ve been laid off
  • The biggest challenge you may face if you’ve been laid off
  • What you can do to be a better job candidate online
  • Which emotional support you should (and shouldn’t) seek out after you’ve been laid off

Listen and learn more! You can play the podcast here, or download it on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.

To learn more about Elizabeth, visit her website at www.jobsearchdivas.com.

Thanks to everyone for listening! And, thank you to those who sent me questions. You can send me your questions to Angela@CopelandCoaching.com. You can also send me questions via Twitter. I’m @CopelandCoach. And, on Facebook, I am Copeland Coaching.

Don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts and leave me a review!

 

Treating Employees with Dignity

Part of my job is to work with professionals who have recently become unemployed. It’s incredible how many people are impacted by layoffs each day. Often, the person was let go due to something outside of their control. Their company reorganized and laid off an entire department. The employee had a great track record of loyal service.

Ultimately, the company had to look out for their own best interests. Perhaps they needed to eliminate a department that uses out of date technology. Or maybe, they need to scale back operations in order to survive. Even though an employee is sad to lose their job, typically they understand that this sort of thing happens.

This is the part that I don’t understand, and I’m not sure if I ever will. Approximately eighty percent of those I speak with have had the same experience. They went to work one morning, and started to do their job. Then, their boss called them and asked them to come to their office for an unplanned meeting. The boss informed them of the reorganization and told them their job would be ending – effective immediately. The person was then walked out of the building.

Company reorganizations are a part of life. The situation I just described doesn’t have to be. Without fail, when I speak to someone who has gone through this experience, they’re broken – often for months or years. They have gone from a loyal, productive employee one day to a hopeless, crying person the next.

It seems that the company feels that if they give the individual some kind of financial payout, this procedure is acceptable. In reality, the sadness and depression the employee is facing is only partially about money. What it’s really about is losing their identity. It’s about being walked out of their workplace as if they’re a criminal. It’s about being suddenly separated from those they have considered their second family for years. It’s like going through a death.

It seems there’s an assumption that a jilted employee may strike back. They may doing something to get retribution while they’re still in the office. I have never seen a single job seeker who was given advanced notice do anything other than be appreciative that their company gave them a heads up.

Companies are slow to implement new strategies. This means that very often, big layoffs were planned months in advance. Months when the impacted employees could have been planning their next move, if they had more notice. This time would not only help them plan, but it would help them to avoid the giant emotional loss that comes along with being walked out of a building you have worked in for so long.

Try to be empathetic with the employee. Put yourself in their shoes. They aren’t just a number. Employees are people who have given years of their time and their heart for their companies.

Angela Copeland, a career coach and founder of Copeland Coaching, can be reached at copelandcoaching.com.

Laid off just in time for the holidays

I hate to admit this. I have seen more people let go this holiday season than in years past. It’s a sad and stressful situation. As employers approach the end of the year, they reevaluated their priorities and made business decisions to reorganize. The shift in structure left many people without a job.

If this has happens to you, please know you’re not alone. Honestly, this trend disappoints me quite a bit. The holidays can be an especially difficult and uncertain time to be without a job. Expenses go up with travel and gifts. And, let’s face it. Job seeking over the holidays can be slow and discouraging, even in a good situation.

The first lesson is this. When it comes to your career, think of yourself as your own small business. Be honest. Have integrity. And, don’t forget – make choices that put you first. Very often, we make sacrifices for our company that we later regret. We stay too long, or we allow ourselves to slowly become outdated – for the sake of the team. Do what’s right, but don’t forget that the company will do what they need to do to survive – whether it impacts your job or not. With that in mind, you must also do what’s right for you.

Second, don’t wait to start searching. I know that it’s emotionally exhausting and you may want to take a break. But, when you’re first laid off can be the perfect time to reach out to others for help. A few years ago, my hometown in Oklahoma was hit by a massive tornado. Amazingly, people were extremely interested to help in the weeks right after it happened – giving money, time, and other helpful donations. A few months later, my hometown was still picking up the pieces from this devastation. But, naturally, most people had moved on to the next tragic news story. In other words, folks are more likely to help very soon after any difficult incident. If you can, push yourself to start quickly.

The holidays are a time when you will have a chance to see friends and colleagues at annual parties. It can be a time of renewal and reconnection. Take advantage of these free events. But, before attending, prepare yourself. You may be surprised at how many direct and sometimes inappropriate questions you may be asked about your former employer. Practice what you will say if someone asks why you were let go. Be brief, be concise, and do your best not to knock your former employer.

Beginning your job search now will leave you prepared to start strong in January. Update your LinkedIn profile, revise your resume, and have a draft cover letter ready to go. Be prepared to react quickly when someone lends you a hand.

I hope you don’t experience this type of loss during this season. But, if you do, know that there are many people who will step in to help. Be ready, so you can take full advantage.

Angela Copeland is a Career Coach and Founder of Copeland Coaching and can be reached at CopelandCoaching.com or on Twitter at @CopelandCoach.

142 | Lessons from Unemployment – Marsha Warner, Portland, OR

Episode 142 is live! This week, we talk with Marsha Warner in Portland, OR.

Marsha is a career coach and full-cycle recruiter who collaborates with people to design a career that brings reward, meaning, and delight to life. Her clients range from college students to mid and senior-level executives.

On today’s episode, Marsha shares how emotions play into job loss, how to explain unemployment in an interview, and how to know you’re ready to look for a new job.

Listen and learn more! You can play the podcast here, or download it on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.

To learn more about Marsha, visit her website here: https://www.careerfactors.com/. You can also find her on LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/company/career-factors.

Thanks to everyone for listening! And, thank you to those who sent me questions. You can send your questions to Angela@CopelandCoaching.com. You can also send me questions via Twitter. I’m @CopelandCoach. And, on Facebook, I am Copeland Coaching.

Don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts and leave me a review!