Losing your job can be a bit of a bummer on many levels: from emotionally to financially and everywhere in between. That being said, it’s not the end of the world and, as the old saying goes, as one door closes, another one surely opens.
Unfortunately, the hard part is often finding that open door. Luckily, this blog is here to not only help you locate that ajar opening, but kick that door right off its hinges! Read on for our expert guide on what to do if you lose your job.
“I Lost My Job - Now What?”
Okay, so the s**t has well and truly hit the fan and you find yourself not just wondering “what happens if I lose my job”, but actually facing the very real prospect of imminent unemployment. It hurts; it stings; and, in layman’s terms, it just downright sucks.
Anyone who has ever lost their job for one reason or another knows that it isn’t a pleasant experience. That being said, tomorrow is most certainly another day and dwelling on the problems of yesterday doesn’t help one bit.
In the wise words of John McClane in Die Hard, “if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem”! While you may feel like crawling into a pit of misery, Netflix and Häagen-Dazs, the best solution to this issue is simple, diary-free and doesn’t require a speedy internet connection.
When it comes to unemployment, it’s important to remember one key thing: hard times don’t last forever. That being said, if you want to speed up the process and fast forward those hard times to the preferred good times that book-end it, the best way to do so is to get busy.
It’s been said that the average job seeker takes approximately three months to find employment following termination from their previous post. As such, your first port of call should be your local Job Centre to secure financial support.
While it may be a hard pill to swallow for some, due largely to the negative stigma attached to unemployment benefit, the fact of the matter is that, as a taxpaying UK citizen, you are entitled to job seekers’ allowance. Additionally, any claims you may make between jobs will also see the government continue to pay your National Insurance contributions.
The specifics of what kind of benefits you are eligible for will vary depending on your circumstances - be it Jobseeker’s Allowance, Universal Credit, Support for Mortgage Interest, etc - but chances are you will be entitled to something to help you through financially, during these hard times.
Curb Your Spending
This one may seem obvious but it’s worth mentioning all the same. When you don’t know where your next pay cheque is going to come from, the last thing you want to do is spend frivolously -particularly if you left without any form of redundancy payout.
If nothing else, the additional free time you may now have on your hands will provide you with the perfect opportunity to comb through your finances. So grab that fine-toothed comb and get combing!
Check through your monthly outgoings and pinpoint the essentials from the non-essential. Paying over the odds for your energy? Switch to a better supplier. Eating three takeaways a week? Bust out that cook book. Still paying for satellite TV you don’t watch? Sky-anora!
There are a whole host of ways to save money when you put your mind to it and now is the best time to do so. Being more money-conscious during these tough times could be the difference between plain sailing and rough waters ahead.
Turn the Page
So, you’ve secured some additional income, you’ve cut out the unnecessary expenditure - now what? Well, with the financial side taken care of as best as possible, now it’s time to focus on turning the page to the next chapter in your employment career.
Your first port of call should be your CV. This is the first thing potential employers will see when you apply for any future jobs, so it’s important to get it right. A presentable, well-structured CV can go a long way in getting your foot in the door for an interview. Conversely, a poor one could leave you in the rejection pile, even if you’re the best fit for the role.
If possible, stick to a simple summary about yourself, your work experience, qualifications and any notable achievements. Aim for around a page or two in length, neatly presented with a simple, readable font. Remember, this is essentially a Tinder profile for your career. You don’t want your employer swiping left and matching that role to someone else, so make that first impression count.
It’s also a good idea to secure some up to date references at this time. Employers often contact named referees as a means of gaining additional insight into your professional experience, so be sure to think hard about who you nominate.
Do Your Homework
With a shiny new CV ready to hit the desk of employers, it’s only a matter of time until you strike gold and get that all important interview - so it’s vital to be ready when that time comes. Luckily, interview prep doesn’t require any kind of extreme training feats that could rival a Rocky 4 montage. All you need to do is stay calm, do your homework and dress to impress.
Even in the world of Zoom meetings and Skype interviews, a scruffy appearance won’t help your cause if you’re trying to impress employers. Be smart and dress smart if you want to make a statement right out of the gate. Remember, when it comes to interviews, it’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed.
Upon interview, it’s also likely that you’ll be asked why you left your previous employer. For the unprepared, this can be a tough bullet to dodge when shots are fired, so be sure to have an answer locked, cocked and ready to go should it be asked.
Finally, the golden rule of any job interview is to make sure you know your stuff when you turn up on the day. There’s no better way to make your interviewer roll their eyes than by turning up oblivious to their company’s purpose.
If you have secured an interview for Thursday, don’t wait until Thursday morning to scour Google. Browse their website ahead of time and know the company back story. Better yet, pick out a few key facts about their business to really blow them away and show your interviewers that you mean business.
So, there you have it: the Talent Wing crash course in bouncing back from losing your job. Follow these easy steps and you’ll be on the fast-track to new horizons in no time!
To get a head start on the competition, check out the jobs we have on offer right now in our jobs section or call our team today to speak to one of our Talent Wing professionals today!