11 Things to do if You Get Laid off ...

In 2007-2010, many people have lost their jobs. Lay offs did not just happen in the United States of America; it also happened in other parts of the world. Many who thought they had security in their jobs were jarred from their current reality and thrust into another called unemployment. After that experience, it seems like getting laid off is no longer something that can only happen to slackers and incompetent people. And the truth of the matter is getting laid off can happen to anyone especially when the world has not fully recovered from the recession. I am not saying that you might get laid off any time soon. But with the events in the past years, it is important to know what you should do if you do get laid off.

1. Document Everything

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Make sure that you have a copy of your severance document. You also need to write down everything your employer says regarding your termination. You can use these documents as leverage for negotiating your severance package or even in a possible wrongful termination lawsuit.

2. Get What is Due to You

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You don’t want to seem like you are going after the company’s money but you do want to get the money you deserve. If you have unused paid leaves, make sure that you are getting paid for them. If you have any work-related expenses, have them reimbursed as soon as you can. If you are allowed to, negotiate for a better severance package.

3. Don’t Rant or Be Bitter in Front of Management

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When you find out that you are getting laid off, don’t go ranting and cursing in front of your employer. Keep your emotions and thoughts in check so that you don’t end up doing or saying anything that you might regret. When you leave the company, you want to leave with your dignity intact. You don’t want to leave a bad impression or create a bad reputation because chances are, you will meet your bosses and coworkers again.

4. Be Honest about the Lay off

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Don’t feel too embarrassed about getting laid off. During this bad financial period, it’s all purely business and nothing personal. Once you get this in your head, you can start telling people about your situation. Begin by telling your family and those who will be most affected by the lay off. You can also tell other people you know; they might be able to help you find a job.

5. Update Your Resume

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Use your free time to update your resume. As soon as you can, ask your old colleagues and bosses for references that you can use in your job applications. You should also study up on how to create a resume that best represents you. Think hard about formatting, content, and word use. These things can greatly affect the overall presentation and effectiveness of your resume.

6. Update Your Skill Set

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Now that you have all this free time, you can update or add to your skill set. You can start studying techniques and concepts that you’ve been meaning to learn. You can also improve on your existing skills. Take the time to build your knowledge base so you can be more attractive to potential employers.

7. Put Yourself out There

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Once again, you need to be honest about your situation; getting laid off is nothing to be ashamed of. Use your time and energy into putting yourself out on the job market. Tell people you know that you are looking for a job. Join networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You can also post your resume on job search sites to make it easy for potential employers to find you.

8. Watch Your Finances

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Now that you have lost your source of income, you really need to take time to assess you financial situation. You need to know what you have to work with so that you can create a budget for your household. Remember to be conservative in your spending and to be vigilant in finding ways to cut down on expenses.

9. Do Some Temp and Freelance Work

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While you don’t have a fulltime job, you can try your luck at temp and freelance work. Register with temp agencies so they can give you a call whenever there is an opening for a job. As for freelance work, you can offer consulting services that are on your level of expertise. You can also find various employment possibilities on online sites such as Odesk, Freelancer, and Elance. Accept every chance to work because every dollar you earn helps.

10. Think of Other Ways to Make Money

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To pad your diminishing savings, try to think of other ways to make money. There are many sideline businesses that you can start without needing a big startup capital. You can also go through your possessions and sell things that you no longer need or use.

11. Keep a Positive Attitude

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It is during times like these when you really need to keep a positive attitude. Things might not seem worth smiling about but they will definitely get better. Don’t wallow in negativity. Instead, do what you can and hope that things work out for the best.

Losing your employment is a very scary thing. But no matter how big your fear is, you need to face the problem head on with confidence and determination. You can look at the lay off as a misfortune or a game the fates is playing with you. Or you can look at it as a chance to start anew. Take advantage of the time on your hands to reevaluate your life and what you are doing. Maybe being unemployed is your chance to embrace your passion, to start your own business, to be self-employed, or to find a better job. If you just hold steadfast in these troubled times, you may be surprised at what you can accomplish or gain.

Top Photo Credit: thekmancom

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