It’s official: the economy is in a recession. Things are not looking good any time soon, and the only recourse for some companies is to let go of their employees. Companies have used various terms to lessen the blow for employees: cutbacks, downsizing, right-sizing, re-engineering, optimization, and streamlining. Yet once you get that notice or e-mail that you’re out of a job, your whole world seems to have crumbled around you.
Losing your job may have drastic consequences in your life; you may have a family to support, or you may hold a job to save money for university. You may even feel demoralized and lose your self-esteem, even if you’re not the first victim of a weakening global economy. Getting fired is indeed a life-changing experience. There are many ways to deal with the effects of losing your livelihood. Here are eight ways to break down the burden and get yourself back in fighting form.
1. Put Things Into Perspective
Companies and human resources departments do not fire people because they feel like it. Downsizing and job cutbacks are often used by companies to recover from downturns, and to remain competitive. Firing is almost always a last-ditch measure used by a company to remain profitable. Companies will resort to many other means before firing people, including:
Pay cuts. Some companies would rather hold on to their present number of employees and remain productive, but they have to pay them a lower salary. Companies may also need to cut back on benefits that are not required by law.
Spending cuts. Perks like parties, free-flowing coffee, and free snacks are the first things to go when the company is not doing too well.
Loans. Most companies usually take out loans and financial plans to stay afloat. The money acquired from loans are almost always used to pay for employee salaries.
Remember that firing is almost always a last resort. As much as you hate the feeling of getting fired, companies don’t like the feeling either. In time, you’ll realize that firing people is almost certainly not personal, but is strictly a business matter.
2. Reflect on Why You Got Fired
While there’s always an employee who gets fired because of professional misconduct, many other employees get canned because of business decisions and the worsening economic situation. Even the hardest workers in the world would get fired if:
- Your position in the company is redundant, or no longer needed by the company.
- The company is not doing too well and can no longer afford your salary rate.
- The company needs to let go of employees to recover losses from bad business decisions.
As long as you didn’t violate company policies or did anything that can get you fired, you can only be let go of your company for those three reasons. Don’t blame yourself for getting fired; after all, you did more than your share, and you were a valuable asset to your company while you were working there.
3. Explore Your Employment Options
Believe it or not, getting fired can be a blessing in disguise. Losing your job can only mean another opportunity to move on to other jobs that may pay you a better rate, or improve your skills even more. With a global economic crunch to deal with, you need to step up and deal with the challenges of seeking new employment or taking the next step for your career. Here are some tips you need to keep in mind:
Update your resume. Relevant work experience and new skills should be entered into your resume. Fill up your resume with seminars and training you took up with your previous employer.
Check the stability of the company. With the current situation of the world market, even promising new companies may fold up months after they open. For the meantime, stick with companies that are stable and have a proven track record in the industry your career is in.
Weigh your salary options. Salaries are still competitive today, although the salary that may be offered to you may be lower than what you expect. As long as you’re willing to settle for the salary a company is offering or advertising, you may want to look for a job that offers a higher salary than your previous job.
4. Report for Work
Just because you got fired doesn’t mean that you don’t have to render the remaining week or month allotted to you to report for work. Things still need to get done at the office, like an important project or a task that involves critical deadlines. While you can’t be blamed for having some bitter or negative feelings about getting terminated, you should still exert your best effort to keep the company going. Remember that you’re only doing what is expected of you, so don’t hope for that one chance that the company will take you back.
5. Keep On It
When you do get fired, you need to tell yourself that your new full-time job for the time being is to look for work. What makes job hunting frustrating today is that not too many companies open up new jobs if they do lay off a lot of their workers. Your ego and confidence will take blows every now and then considering how hard it is to find jobs today.
You may have to take freelance jobs or part-time jobs in the meantime to keep yourself busy, and to earn extra money on the side. You can find full-time and part-time jobs from classified ads on newspapers or on the Internet. Unless you can find yourself doing freelancing for the long haul, remember that your goal is to look for full-time employment.
6. Spend Your Savings Wisely
Some people will tell you to invest your savings on the stock market or to put up your own business. Investments and entrepreneurship are high-risk, high-reward enterprises that are great when they succeed, but can fail without commitment and the right sense of direction. As much as rags-to-riches stories about people who made it big never fail to inspire, the truth is that a full-time job is the best way to get you out of a financial rut.
You need to dip into your savings account from time to time to pay the bills. Remember that when you’re out of a job, you don’t have a stable source of income. You also do not have a reliable way to fill up your bank account except for the bank’s interest rates. While you still do not have a job, be more thrifty and be frugal with your expenses. You may need to cut back on unnecessary costs and tighten your belt a bit, but you’ll be able to spend and invest more freely when you finally nail a regular job.
7. Hope for the Best
Crises are never permanent; you should take getting laid off as a sign that you need to step up and take opportunities that weren’t there before when you held down your previous job. It’s demoralizing to lose your means of livelihood, but it’s not the end of the world. Remember: the rest of your life does not have to be dictated by a single failure that isn’t even your own.
Every day, business and financial headlines tell readers the bad news that the economy isn’t looking too good. The way things are going, there will still be people in unemployment lines, and even the best employees of a company will face retrenchment or termination. The important thing is not to lose hope in the kindness of others, and the hope that one day, everything will be better. Even a crisis of this magnitude is not permanent, and all of this will pass. For more tips on coping up with recession, read how to live through a recession.
* It will be tough and rough sailing after being fired, you should know the ways on how to save money so that you could stretch your budget until you find a new job.