What to do if You are Laid Off from Your Job

In these tough economic times, layoffs have become common in the United States and in Europe and the trend is spreading to all over the world. Therefore, the chances of being laid off from your job are increasing and hence, there a few things to do if you are laid off from your job. First and perhaps, the most important aspect is that you must not be taken by surprise if you are asked to leave by your employer. What this means is that you must be prepared for any eventuality and hence, you must start your preparations in case you are laid off.

In other words, look out for the warning signs, prepare yourself, and take steps to minimize the risks associated with layoffs. These steps include making your resume attractive, not taking on fresh loans and debts, and generally, prepare your family members for hardship even before you are laid off. Further, the most important thing you can do is to evaluate where you stand in the job market and your chances of getting another job quickly and without causing too much pain to yourself and your loved ones. Apart from this, it is common for the governments to provide for unemployment benefits and therefore, you must budget your expenses in such a way that you and your family can manage for at least six months of unemployment.

The other aspect that is important is that as far as possible; negotiate a good severance package for yourself in case you are laid off. If you are higher up the hierarchy, chances are that your employer would give you a severance package that includes benefits for at least six months of employment. In case you are lower in the hierarchy, ensure that you get at least two to three months of benefits as your severance package.

The third aspect about being laid off is that you can bargain with your company to allow you to use the premises for a week or two after you are asked to leave so that you can use the infrastructure and the facilities to hunt for another job. Of course, many people now have all the facilities like internet enabled computers, printers, and faxes in their homes. However, it does not do any harm if you use the company facilities to look for another job on a temporary basis.

The fourth aspect is that as far as possible try and get a good recommendation from your boss or manager about yourself. Though getting laid off is a painful experience, being rational and practical is very important and hence, do not get emotional or relapse into anger and dissatisfaction. Remember that in these times, layoffs have become commonplace and therefore, forewarned is forearmed which means that be prepared for any eventuality.

The fifth aspect is that if you are laid off, try and get yourself back in the reckoning within a week or so after the shock wears off and start job-hunting as soon as possible. This means that the recovery from the event of being laid off must be as quick as possible so that you can get employment elsewhere.

The final point to note is that upgrade your skills and invest in yourself even if you are not being laid off so that you have the edge over other employees and you can get another job in case of layoff from your present employer. The reason this is important is that most companies decide on purely economic terms on whom to layoff and whom to retain. By making yourself valuable and indispensable you can ensure that, your chances of being laid off are reduced and even if you are laid off, you can find yourself another job in a smooth transition.


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