Coping with Multiple Layoffs
Today’s tough economic times have spawned a grim new phenomenon: people getting laid off more than once within a short period of time. These “repeat victims” may have a difficult time proving their worth to prospective employers and returning to the workforce in a timely manner.
If you have experienced another layoff, remember that the basic rules of job-seeking remain in place. You must be highly aggressive in your job search and maintain a positive attitude. You probably assembled a network of peers and an action plan during your first layoff. Now is the time to cultivate that network, and tweak your job action plan. Incorporate any new ideas you may not have implemented during your previous layoff.
For example: Do you want to stay on your current career path? Or should you consider a new, more promising field? If you decide to stay in your current career, is consulting a workable option? If you decide to change careers, strategic thinking is key. Understand the hiring climate of your new field. Let your network of peers know of your possible career move. Ask for their feedback, and use it to gauge your decision.
Use this time to rethink possibilities that you might have dismissed before–like entrepreneurship. Staples founder Tom Stemberg and billionaire-turned-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg both founded lucrative businesses after they were laid off from their jobs.
Whatever you decide, the Internet offers numerous approaches to market your credentials, such as LinkedIn, Twitter, or your own customized Web page. Your presence on, and mastery of, these media resources can make you more attractive to potential employers. Be sure to list any and all pertinent Internet links on your resumé and beneath your signature on your email correspondence.
Of course, none of your job hunting efforts will matter if you exhibit a poor attitude at job interviews. A person who has experienced multiple job losses can, understandably, suffer feelings of resentment or low self-esteem. So, it is imperative to combat these negative sentiments with activities that restore self-confidence.
Volunteer work is an excellent way to stay positive, remain challenged, and rebuild your skill set. If you select a volunteer activity that potential employers are associated with, it provides an avenue for networking, as well. And listing altruistic activities on your resumé is always a plus.
Besides charity work, it is important to maintain an ambitious schedule that includes attending workshops, physical activity, job networking, attending classes, having a part-time job, etc. Filling your day with activity and maintaining your health will help you re-enter the job market from a strong position.