The current economic slowdown has left many companies and organizations with no option but to right size their employee strength from various functions. This may mean loss of job for some of you or for your friends due to various reasons like poor financial health of your company, low demand from the market, acquisition by a larger company and governance issues to name a few.
Job loss can indeed be a confusing and stressful phase in one’s life! But what many people don’t realize is that job loss can be an opportunity that will help them discover a new horizon that will bring a new sense of purpose and direction in their life. Successful people are those who face challenges with the confidence and conviction that they have the strength and ability to handle any situation positively and turn it around to their advantage. Often, the trick to get ahead is to simply know how to convert a minus into a plus. Through the following 5 simple steps, this article will show you how YOU can do that!
Start something new
Have you always wanted to try something new - maybe a job in a different function or industry but kept putting it off? Or maybe you have always dreamt of owning a business but believed in waiting for the right time. Well, now may be the time. Take this as an opportunity to explore different career options. Apply for internships, take up a part-time job, work from home or turn your hobby into a money making venture – opportunities are abound. Keep trying – for all you know, you may be the next billionaire!
Brand called you
Competition for jobs is high during a slowdown. It’s all about survival of the fittest. Hence, you need to set yourself apart from the rest of the crowd, position yourself strategically and create an identity that makes you unique in the eyes of your potential employer. How can you do that?
- Be competent by expanding your employability skills
- Pursue higher education or enroll in professional training courses that will help you develop additional skillsets and qualifications.
- Apprenticeships are also an excellent way to build competencies that make you employable.
Having the right skills alone will not help you get noticed. Build a portfolio around your strengths and promote yourself by showcasing your talents through various medium like blogs, podcasts and speaking opportunities in relevant forums. If you are not sure about the right way to go about it, work with a brand or image consultant who will help you stand out from competition. You are your own brand; promote it well and opportunities will fly in from every corner.
Network, network and network
The importance of networking during tough times can’t be stressed enough. Networking is not just a means to invest in meaningful relationships; it is also a very powerful tool for career development. Some of the steps could be: Join the management association closer to your city; Keep attending professional meetings and discussion forums; Look for mentors and engage in positive conversations. In all your engagements, try to create a positive impression about you. Also it’s important to leverage upon social media to build and sustain your contact chain.
Delink self from the situation and gain confidence
At the time of separation, it is natural to experience lower levels of confidence and doubt your own potential to succeed. So, the primary task here is for you to retain high confidence. This will happen once you distance yourself from the situation.
However, this is easier said than done. You need to take stock of the situation, accept the reality and refrain from blaming yourself or anyone for the events which led to your separation. Viewing the event from a third person perspective without bias will help you understand the situation objectively and rise from anxiety or depression. During this time, it is recommended to share your worries and concerns with your close friends or well-wishers in the family.
If you have difficulty expressing yourself to your loved ones, then it’s best to seek the help of a trained and experienced counsellor. Often, talking about your challenges can clear your mind and help you explore other options. Once you get the load off your mind, you will feel more confident and it allows you to prepare earnestly to resolve the crises. A counsellor’s long experience in handling similar situations can help you come out with a ready solution!
It is important to observe financial prudence and spend cautiously while you are temporarily without a job. Prepare a budget so that you have a clear idea of what you will need for every month. Cut the ostentatious expenditure which you were indulging in while you had a job. Limit the usage of all types of plastic money; never try to borrow beyond your limits as the interest itself can get you bankrupt. During this time, it’s best to avoid taking risks in the capital markets and avert any further crisis.
In countries where the markets are volatile and companies often realign their workforce. Employees need to keep a reserve of minimum six months salary to face any eventuality. It is always advisable to get into financial planning right from the beginning of a person’s career so that they are fully prepared to meet any unforeseen contingencies. For those of you, who were not in the habit of maintaining a savings portfolio before, make sure to maximize on your savings during your next job.
Sometimes, all it takes to succeed in life is a little perspective and a positive mindset. Always keep in mind that job losses are temporary and while these can be turbulent times, it’s always important not to lose faith in your own strengths and abilities. Always remember – you hold the key to your life; believe in yourself and the rest will follow!