When you work in an organisation, redundancy is unfortunately sometimes a fact of life. In most instances redundancies occur because of organisational issues and challenges, so if you are experiencing redundancy then the most important thing is to try not to take it as a personal attack on you and your capabilities as an employee.
This is of course easier said than done, especially for those that have been in an organisation for many years. It can be difficult to go through such a big change if you have been in an organisation for a long time. Even for those that havent, it can be an overwhelming, stressful and even traumatic experience, especially if the process is long and drawn out.
It’s easy to feel powerless and out of control, but its important to recognise that there are a number of things that are in your circle of control that you can influence and decide which can help you feel more in control of where life takes you and what happens next. As someone who is going through redundancy for the first time, there are a number of things I have done that I wanted to share. Here are my top five tips to get through redundancy!
#1 Set up a meeting with your Manager or ER
Make sure you fully understand the redundancy process. What it looks like, what will happen and when it will happen. Go over the details, when will your exit date be, what will a severance look like for you if your eligible to receive one and if so when will it be paid. Can you return to the organisation in the future and is there anything you can’t do or anyone you can’t work for a certain amount of time. Dont assume anything and make sure you ask everything.
#2 Reflect and Reassess
Take some time out to reflect and reassess your career and your life. Were you in the career you wanted to be in or were you always waiting for life to figure itself out. Taking redundancy is often a great point to stop and reflect on whether you’ve just fallen into a job and career or whether you’ve been doing what you love and want to do more of it. It’s often a great opportunity to change career tracks, start that business you’ve always wanted to start, travel or study, unless of course you’ve been doing what you love and want to do more of it.
#3 Tap your network and get connected
It’s not what you know it’s who you know. Sometimes this phrase rings true, especially in the job market. So tap your professional contacts and networks to get your ear to the ground on who’s hiring, whats coming up and who knows who. I’m always surprised how connected people are so this is always the first thing I do when I know I’m going to be in the market soon.
#4 Update your CV and social networks
Once you’ve started working your network the next thing you should start doing engaging with headhunters and recruiters. The first thing they are going to do is ask for your CV or find it themselves on LinkedIn, so make sure that you’ve updated your CV and profile on any social networks that you’re on. If you aren’t on Linked in then you should be. It’s long ago became the number one way that I find jobs and jobs find me replacing the likes of Monster.co.uk. It’s the next best way after my personal network of finding a new job.
#5 Take Some Time Out
If you can afford to, take some time out in between jobs. This may be the only opportunity you get for a while to take that holiday or do that course you’ve been thinking about for a while. Bear in mind that any gaps between employment will need to be explained during the referencing process, but a short gap between employment and especially following redundancy is acceptable and can be easily explained.
Going through a redundancy isn’t an easy time for anyone, no matter how old, young or tenured you are. Whilst we will of course all experience it in an individual way, it may be helpful to understand that we will all go through the exact same grief or loss cycle as we process our emotions. The only difference will be how quickly or slowly we go through it depending on how we feel. Following these five steps have definitely helped me move through it quickly, feeling relatively comfortable and in control and hopefully they’ll help you too!