It is always a scary time when you get laid off. Do you have enough savings? Can you pay your bills? Where on earth are you going to find a job?!?
Last week I was laid off due to my previous employer declaring bankruptcy and laying off half of the corporate staff.
Was I angry that I did everything I possibly could to do my very best job at every given task (and even tasks that were not assigned to me)?
No, not at all. I am happy that I was able to gain the experience and strengthen my portfolio. Sulking and whining about it will get me nowhere. Take your new-found experience, knowledge and network, and go find yourself a new job! It’s that easy right? Well, not exactly…
There are many, many ways to go about looking for new career opportunities. Most people turn to the internet and begin spewing out resumés in every direction. This is probably the worst way to go about job hunting. Having your resumé sitting in an open-access HR email box with hundreds or thousands of other resumés is worse than it being in an equally large stack of paper versions.
Talk to People, Go Network
Make a list of companies that seem interesting to you, find out who is in charge of hiring within the department that you wish to work in and get in touch with them. Do NOT ask for a job! You might be thinking “Chris, that’s crazy, the whole reason that I am reaching out to this person is to get a job!” Sure, it might be crazy, but it works. When you contact them, simply say that you are looking to pick their brain and use their expertise so you can get back on your career path and ask if they would be willing to meet for coffee. When you meet with them, ask how they got where they are today, what hurdles they had to cross, what drives them, what surprises (good or bad) did they experience on their way up.
Meeting with people like this gives both parties the ability to talk about job related topics in a relaxed environment (you’ll be less relaxed than they are). At the end of the meeting, ask if they have any advice on where to look, or perhaps if their company is hiring. If they say they are, then you just had your first interview! If not, you walk away with another connection, more knowledge and perhaps a lead on new job opportunities.
Whatever you do, do not get discouraged! Finding the right job may take a long time. There are a lot of people that are fighting for the same positions you are. Keep your chin up, take it all in stride. Whatever you do, do not give up.
Grab the newest version of What Color is Your Parachute?This book is the ultimate read to give you interview tips, job hunting skills; and most of all, confidence!