The official meaning of redundancy is “the state of being not or no longer needed or useful”. Don’t let it bring about fear though… You can get survive redundancy and come out better for it!
I’d been working with my company for 6.5 years. I won’t name them but if you follow me on Instagram you probably already know who I worked for. As most companies do, my company has been going through changes. This time around it was my turn to get that dreaded white packet from HR… I saw it coming, I mean did HR even know I could see my boss’s calendar and it was in there, staring me in the face for 4 days before my actual meeting…smart
Even though I saw it coming I was still quite emotional. For almost 7 years of my adult life (ages 21-28) I had been working here. It was my second ever job, my first corporate job, the one that made me able to leave the bad situation at my last job.
Now that I’m going to be free during the day it’s got me thinking…so now what? Although I was originally thinking I would take a few months off, I decided that for financial reasons it’s probably wisest if I get a new job as soon as possible. This way I can keep the redundancy package in the bank and maybe use it for a home deposit. Technically because of my 4 week notice period (which i’m not working during), I’m still ’employed’ until 21st September so I can’t really say yet that I’m ‘unemployed’. I’ve already started applying for new jobs though and I have an interview on Monday 3/9/18.
As nervous as I am, I’m excited to start something new. I haven’t had anything new in my life in a long time. My job had become something I could do without thinking and was doing the same things everyday. There was nowhere that I could see myself moving to within the company and I had been looking at leaving ( I never shared that with them). The only thing holding me back was that I was trying to conceive (that’s another story) but after 1 year of trying and no luck I’ve given up for the moment.
So now I’m hopefully about to start a new job in the next few weeks and to be honest I’m so scared for the change. But I need it…
If you’ve recently been made redundant or think you might be, below are some of my tips to survive redundancy.
1. Stay calm
In your initial meeting, say as little as possible. The feeling is still quite a shock even if you knew it was a possibility. There is often also some excitement about new possibilities, and it’s common to be scared about change. It can be a lot to process. Take time to debrief with someone appropriate. I spoke with my work provided counselor and employee service people right after the meeting, and yes there was tears.
As difficult as it is, you should try not to take the redundancy process as a personal attack on yourself or your performance. The worst thing you can do is have a angry fit and break any ties you had with that company or even worse cause yourself to get a bad name that might get out to a potential employer. Don’t burn your bridges!
2. It’s the role, not you
Your job is what you do, not who you are. It’s the role that’s been made redundant, not you. By definition, a genuine redundancy is when that persons role doesn’t need to be undertaken by anyone anymore. Which means it is your role that’s no longer required, rather than you and your skills, experience or knowledge. Don’t take it personally.
3. Take some time and think
No matter how tempting it is to apply for numerous jobs immediately, have a good hard think before you make your next move. It’s also a good idea (if you can afford it) to take a break. I am booking myself for a small 4 day break in the rainforest next week to rest and relax.
4. Connect to your network
Don’t rely on just the standard job sites. A lot of the available jobs are in the hidden job market, meaning you may need to network, approach companies direct or reach out to your contacts. It’s handy to check in with people on LinkedIn and see if there are any opportunities that they know of.
5. Find a hobby
If you find yourself with empty days try and pick up a hobby to clear your head. I personally love anything creative so I’ve been playing more with my craft things and am planning on setting up an Etsy store at some point.
6. Review your finances
If you don’t have any emergency fund or savings and your payout isn’t much you may need to seek financial help or advice. If you don’t already have a budget, make one. You can find a basic budget planner at Money Smart by ASIC. A budget will not only assist you in working out where your money is going. It’ll also help you work out whether you need to seek a job straightaway as well as if you can afford to take a possible pay cut in your next role.
If you’re in Australia you can check out the Dept of Human Services website for information on possible government benefits and assistance you could receive while you’re looking for work.
If your redundancy payment is large it may also be useful to seek financial advice on what’s the best way to use it in your current financial situation.
These will take you right to the redundancy sections on each site.
Have you ever been made redundant? Tell me about it in the comments below…