It’s raining layoffs all over the place and if the forecasts are to be believed it is not going to be confined to just the tech industry.
While a lot of us are still grappling with the shock, I did a Linkedin Live session a couple of weeks ago.
I discussed 6 strategies to handle this unwelcome situation in life. If you know someone who is going through this, share this series with them so that it helps.
1. ACCEPT IT
As easy as it sounds, I know it’s not. Take your time, wallow in self-pity, get angry at the unfairness and vent it out. It’s okay to take a minute to deal with your emotions.
But DON’T go into a self-doubt spiral. The layoffs were nothing personal, so it’s not a reflection on the quality of your work or skills.
Life’s been unkind and it’s only human to feel bad about it. Permit yourself to do it. Take some time, do what you like, connect with family and friends while you are at it. Build your resilience for the challenge that lies ahead.
If it helps, count your blessings. I am sure there is something to be grateful about!
Every dark cloud has a silver lining. Reframe your negative thoughts to find that lining.
Maybe this is a great opportunity for you to make that change in your career path. This could be a blessing in disguise and you have all this time to spend with your family – while you look for a new job.
You could think of this as a time to re-adjust your life, work and health goals. Maybe this is the push you needed to start things on your own and turn into an entrepreneur.
Or you could pick up something temporary to keep the money coming in and invest the time left in up-skilling yourself.
Reframing can help you see so many different ways in which this could be a good thing.
3. MAKE A LIST OF YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS
Before you shoot your resumes to a jillion companies, take a step back.
Give a good look at your achievements so far – projects you’ve handled, outcomes you have gotten for the company and skills you are strong at.
It could be a while since you did this exercise. So take the time to do a SWOT analysis of what you bring to the table at this point in your career.
This will help you face the interviews with confidence with full knowledge of what you have to offer in terms of strength. You can also consider doing something to cover your weakness gap.
Every interviewer will want to know why they should hire you. And after a layoff, it becomes doubly hard to emerge from the shadow of it and convince people of your credentials.
This list should be able to help you do that, and easily!
4. LEARN TO PRESENT YOUR EXPERIENCE
While the list might look impressive, it is more important to be able to make a case for yourself confidently during an interview.
Using the right words and tone to highlight your strength is key to clinch the interview for you.
Re-assess your communication skills. Do you need help with your voice and presentation? Is your body language confident? Are your answers impactful and convincing enough?
If you find yourself lacking in any of these, get a coach. Or anyone who’s willing to help you practice and give you feedback.
Unless you can present with impact, all the skills you bring to the table will be futile. So really practice your answers.
5. GET ON LINKEDIN
And other social media where you are likely to find job leads. Maybe this could be a time when you get serious about building an online brand.
Building a brand might sound like a long and intimidating process. But with a little bit of work everyday, you’ll be surprised how far you can go.
Here is an article I wrote on how to build you profile on Linkedin, if you are new to the platform.
Linkedin has introduced a lot of new features to make it easier to build a brand, connect with people who matter and engage with them to start conversations.
Here are a few things you should do immediately:
– Update your profile
– Add the position you are looking for in the head line
(Don’t say- looking for opportunities. This doesn’t do anything for the search engine and you are likely to use important job leads)
– Add a professionally shot photo – a headshot with a clean, neutral background. Profiles with photos always get more hits
– Update your summary with your achievements, skills and who are looking to connect with
– Look for hashtags in your industry and engage with the content on it
Stick with it even though it might seem like an uphill task initially. Whether it gets you a job or not, making connections and creating conversations never has a downside to it.
This can also help you make a list of companies you want to apply to or head honchos you want to write to.
6. FOLLOW UP DILIGENTLY
Once you talk to people or send out your resume, it is equally important to keep up. Follow up is one of the most critical skills to have when finding a job (or closing a sale, even)
Maintain an excel sheet of the companies you’ve written to or sent your resumes to. Have a comments column where you update the background and a gist of your latest conversation.
You can also write the date of the next follow up you’ve fixed.
You might have some new-fangled apps to keep track of the same. But I believe in the good old excel sheet to keep things simple yet effective.
Finding a new job at a time of mass layoffs can be hard. But with some optimism and right kind of planning, you can emerge victorious.
Do you have any questions about any of the above?
Or are you looking for a coach to help you polish your communication skills?
You can discuss it with me for free at a time of your choosing here