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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!

 

154 | Making Meaning of Work – Amy Wrzesniewski, Professor of Organizational Behavior at Yale University

Episode 154 is live! This week, we talk with Amy Wrzesniewski in New Haven, CT. Amy is a professor of organizational behavior at the School of Management at Yale University. Her research interests focus on how people make meaning of their work in difficult contexts, including stigmatized occupations, virtual work, and the absence of work. She also researches the experience of work as a job, career, or calling. Her current research involves studying how employees shape their interactions and relationships with others in the workplace to change both their work identity and the meaning of the job. She teaches both on managing groups and teams, and global virtual teams.

On today’s episode, Amy shares:

  • The tie between purpose and meaning in work
  • How closely our career is tied to our identity
  • Why we may regret our occupational choices mid-career
  • Whether or not having purpose at work can increase your success
  • A common mistake job seekers make
  • The impact of unemployment on our identity

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

To learn more about Amy, find her on the Yale website and on YouTube.

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!

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.

Pay Attention to Signs It’s Time to Go

Very often as job seekers, we struggle with the idea of when to leave. We may feel that it makes no sense to leave one good job for another. This can make sense in certain situations. However, when the writing is on the wall, it’s best to pay attention.

If we wait too long, we can create a tough situation for ourselves. We may feel helpless, and at the whim of our company or our boss. We may feel like we have few choices when looking for a new job. We may be quick to take a job that pays less or doesn’t fall in line with our career goals.

But, if we’re proactive, this is a pitfall we can avoid (or make less painful). The first step is to pay attention to the signs. If your manager is unhappy with your performance and begins to document their complaints, it can be a sign. Do your best to correct any issues identified, but if the manager is not interested to be pleased, pay attention. Documentation is one way that managers are able to justify firing an employee.

If your job function is becoming outdated, pay attention. It can also be a bad sign if there are more people entering your field than necessary. It can also be a bad sign if computers or workers from other countries are replacing workers.

Also watch for larger industry trends. If your industry is doing poorly due to external factors, watch how your company and its competitors are reacting. If your company is restructuring frequently or turning over top level management, watch closely.

If you sit and wait to become outdated, you will. But, you don’t have to. If you monitor changes in your company and industry, you will know when to prepare for the future.

If you’ve noticed these changes, you may wonder what you should do. First, look for other industries that may be able to use your skills, but that are doing better than your industry. Begin reading job descriptions for alternative jobs that have similar requirements as to your qualifications. And, if you have to, look at other cities near you where the job market is healthier. In other words, do research.

At the same time, take stock of your professional network. Think about how many contacts you have outside of your current company or your current industry. If your company went under, do you have people you could call that aren’t coworkers? If the answer is no, it’s time to start reaching out. Although it’s not always fun, networking has become a way of life, and a necessary part of surviving in today’s job market.

As you can see, all of these suggestions are about taking control of your future. It’s time to stop waiting to see what will happen to you. Instead, begin making small steps toward a future that you choose. You’re more likely to find something you’ll want to stick with for years to come.

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

Helping a Hopeless Job Seeker

If you have a job seeker in your life, there’s a decent chance you’re concerned about them. This is especially true if they are currently unemployed. They’re upset. You feel upset. You may secretly wonder what they’re doing wrong, and what you can do to help.

The right answer to this question can be tough. One thing to keep in mind is that although the job market is improving, it’s still not easy. Jobs are more specialized. Many roles are done by fewer total people than in the past. And, different markets and cities are improving at different rates. As you would expect, not every job seeker is having the same rosy experience.

The online process also presents huge challenges. It’s hard to overestimate this issue. Companies often use their websites to collect resumes, but it can be tough to know which internet applications are actually seen by human eyes. The online process sounds like it should be simple, so a job seeker may wonder what’s wrong with their resume when they don’t hear back. They begin to take it personally. This negative experience is compounded when family and friends begin to question the job seeker regularly on what the problem is, or perhaps more accurately, what “their” problem is.

One of the best things you can do is be supportive and provide a listening ear. Job searching, especially when you’re unemployed, can be an isolating experience. This is true for almost everyone. The job search and its difficulties is something job seekers rarely talk about openly to other people. Because of this, the job seeker will likely assume they’re the only one struggling through the process, or the only one not getting calls back from online applications.

A second helpful thing you can do is to offer assistance. Offer to review the job seeker’s resume. Offer to introduce the person to contacts you have. But, be prepared to follow through on your promises. During this time of change, the person needs to know they can count on you.

Last, try to be understanding and supportive. If you haven’t looked for a job in some time, realize that the job market is constantly changing. Finding a new job takes time – even for the most seasoned and successful professional.

It’s also important to note that finding a job in one field (for example, technology) can be much easier than finding a job in another (for example, communications). Some fields are flooded with applicants while others have very little competition. And, certain jobs require certifications or education while others are open to a broader base of candidates.

The bottom line is, don’t assume the job seeker isn’t trying, or that they have chosen the wrong career path. And, if they have a tough time emotionally, realize that it’s just part of the process. They’re normal and they will find something new in time. Until then, try to be as patient and supportive as you can. It will help them in the long run.

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!