There’s no dressing it up, redundancy is difficult to deal with. It’s a bitter blow to your self-esteem, your finances, and often your health.
Indeed, along with divorce and bereavement, losing a job ranks as one of life’s biggest causes of stress - and it can leave you bitter and depressed.
Still, every cloud. Once you pick yourself off the floor, redundancy can be used as a spur to push you on to bigger and better things, such as a radical change of career or starting your own business.
The first thing to do after you’ve been made redundant, says Corinne Mills, career coach and joint managing director of Personal Career Management, is to relax and set some time aside for rest and fun.
“Take some time to chill out without thinking about job-searching,” she says. “Use the time to reflect – away from all of the hustle of work it’s a good time to think about what it is you really want from your career and your next role.”
Once you’re feeling like your normal self, Corinne recommends making a list of all your skills and achievements.
“Sit down and write a list of all the positive things you have to offer an employer,” she says. “You can use this as preparation for your CV and interview – and it will also give you a boost.”
Although you may be low on self esteem, it’s a good idea to attend social functions, both corporate and personal, and use these an opportunity to do some networking.
“You may find that they can be of help to you with contacts or information about companies who may be hiring,” says Corinne. “Get some business cards printed so you can give these out to people.”
For most of us, the biggest worry after redundancy is money. Corrine recommends planning your finances - setting a budget and sticking to it.
“Work out your current financial situation and a realistic budget for the coming months,” she says. “This will help you feel more in control – rather than worrying without knowing the true picture.”
When it comes to looking for your next job, career support can be a massive help. “Even in the most buoyant of job markets, it can come as a surprise to find just how demanding job searching can be,” says Corrine. “Working with a career coach from a reputable career management company can give you a huge head start over the competition.”