There’s a lot more to redundancy than pay-outs and the logistics of what to do when you’ve lost your job. There’s also a big emotional strain... one that can really affect your next move.
We examine the feelings you’re likely to face when being made redundant and how to stay positive and look to the future.
As far as the exact process you’ll face during redundancy goes, take a look at our redundancy legal advice for information on what you can expect. You may find that your entire department or even company is facing the chop. If this is the case, then at least you’re in the same boat as your colleagues and friends and you can lean on each other.
Where the real emotional hardship begins is when your company makes selective redundancies, which involves only certain roles being cut. This can lead you to doubt yourself and the contribution you made to the company, which can be particularly hard if you consider yourself to be a valuable member of the team.
The important thing is to not take it too personally. Redundancy is a difficult thing for employers to do and is usually not a decision taken lightly – they will look at a huge range of selection criteria when choosing people to let go, from the salaries people are paid to their exact responsibilities (find out exactly what they look for). Just because you’re chosen doesn’t mean it’s not because they don’t believe you were good at your job. Don’t start questioning your ability and doubting yourself.
So, it’s happened. You’ve been made redundant. For many, the immediate worry is what will people think? Concerns can include your partner having to pick up the slack on bills for a while, or your successful friends not understanding or being supportive. What if people think it’s YOUR fault?
These are all natural worries that run through all of our minds after losing our jobs. The important thing is not to be embarrassed or act like you have something to hide. Redundancy isn’t your fault and now, more than ever, people are going through this at all career levels, from new-starters right up to top managers, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.
Learn what you can about the situation and what you’re entitled to and look into where you stand financially – are you owed redundancy money and notice? Then tell your nearest and dearest when you’re armed with all of the facts and are in control. This will empower you and stop them worrying. When you lose control of a situation like this, take it right back.
Silver lining, what silver lining?
In the days following a redundancy you’re likely to be on a massive downer. The future suddenly looks uncertain and you don’t know what’s going to happen. But now is the time to look at things in a positive light. This is your chance to move your career forward.
First off, update your CV. This is vital. Now start looking for a new job. Ignore the bad press about unemployment figures and just start getting your CV out there. Set up your profile on totaljobs.com and make it so that employers can headhunt you. Remember, your skills as an employee are needed by other companies and not everyone has been so badly hit by the recession. Some places are thriving at the moment – now is your chance to bust out of that rut and start afresh.