​How To Handle A Redundancy? (Job Seeker Series)

​How To Handle A Redundancy? (Job Seeker Series)

Posted on 26 July 2022

Nothing can throw off your life plans quite like being made redundant. Particularly in times of economic upheaval, not knowing where your next pay cheque is coming from is not a situation anybody wants to be in. Combine that with the inevitable onslaught of emotions that comes with being made redundant — anger, depression, a battered sense of self-worth — and you’re in for a rough ride. As cloudy as your outlook may be, we’re here to remind you that it is not the end of the world. Here are some things to remember to help you get through this difficult time.

Don’t lose your head

It is completely normal to be upset, even if you didn’t particularly like your job. The last thing you want to do, however, is panic. As soon as you have a quiet moment to yourself (and once you finish reading this article), consider the practical implications of your predicament. How urgently do you need to find another place of employment? How much savings do you have? What are your financial commitments and can you cut out any of them? Can you afford to take a month or two off? Settling the practical side of losing your job first will help clear your mind of needless worry.

Know your rights

If you already have it, examine your retrenchment or redundancy package and determine if it meets your local requirements. Contact your union if you have any questions about what you are owed, and what to do if you feel you haven’t been given your due. Don’t be bashful. If you realise the company has short-changed you, make sure to call up the HR department and inform them of their mistake. If they won’t hear you out, take the case to your local labour ministry. You may feel like the last thing you want to do is kick up a fuss, or maybe you feel you don’t have the willpower to start a fight over policies and legalities, but you will feel better for claiming your rights as a worker.

It’s not personal

Companies will always protect their bottom line. Try to understand the reason behind the redundancy. Maybe the company has been losing money, or maybe there’s a recession. The likelihood is that it has little to do with you. It’s hard, but the sooner you accept this the quicker you will be able to move on. Self-doubt hinders progress, and you could end up spiralling in a whirlpool of bitterness and depression. Instead, take a step back and look at the bigger picture. While this one company cannot (or will not) see enough value in you to keep you in their employ, another company might think the world of you.

The start of something new

Think of this experience as a glass half full. Yes, you’ve lost something, but the ground is ripe for a fresh start. Is there a passion you’ve been meaning to pursue, or another company you’ve been wanting to enquire at? Now is the time to do it, because what do you have to lose? Here is a great opportunity for you to turn something less than ideal into a pivotal moment in your life, to get into an industry you’ve always been interested in, or to finally finish that screenplay at the bottom of your drawer. The sky’s the limit. Or maybe you’ve been wanting to spend more time with your loved ones, an ageing parent or your young children. This could be the push you need to find a job with reduced hours and greater flexibility.

Tap into your network

If you’ve been out of the job hunt for a while, the world of recruitment can be a daunting dive. The good news is, that the process is far more accessible now than ever before. Get on networking sites like LinkedIn, or if you already have a profile, update your CV and give your profile a touch-up. Tap into your network. Get in touch with contacts you’ve made on the job, or various friends and acquaintances who may know of job vacancies in their own companies.

Look after yourself

Most importantly, be kind to yourself. Getting laid off is not a situation anyone wants to find themselves in, but it happens more than you think. Allow yourself time to do the things you love. Eat your favourite foods, watch your favourite movie, go on that midnight bicycle ride you’ve been putting off, and catch up with old friends and loved ones. Losing your job can be especially hard on your ego, but now is the time to forget your pride and tap into your support network. You are not your job, and no one knows this better than the people who love you.

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