So you’ve been made redundant? It can hurt, no doubt, I’ve been there, it can be a bitter blow to your self- esteem, can leave you upset, stressed and feeling uncertain about the future.
I learnt several years ago, actually just after graduating and again after the Global Financial Crisis, that jobs are less likely to be for life, that employees should manage their own career paths , development and financial security.
Straight after graduating I was laid off twice, consecutively. I do take some comfort in the fact that Steve Jobs was also laid off from his own company Apple and that he was subsequently asked to return! On the bright side it meant that I landed a great opportunity in a multinational, Cisco, and I learnt about digital marketing, emerging markets and subsequently wrote my first business book which was published by The New York FT press when I was aged 27.
In 2008 I worked for another large company, a subsidiary of a multinational, just before the peak of the financial crisis, and I saw my manager reapply for his own position whilst expecting his fourth child, more streamlining, more job cuts, more redundancies.
I’ve seen people lose their jobs after spending over a decade with a company and left saddened and shocked regardless of the fact that they’d seen the same thing happen to their colleagues.
1) Work life balance
If you’ve got a bit of time off as a consequence of redundancy, try enjoying it, rediscovering your passions, interests and hobbies.
Enjoy a bit of time with the family, do the gardening, go to the gym, read, pursue old interests, work with a charity, sleep in and don’t set the alarm. Take a cruise or at least have a holiday, you can get back to job hunting after a nice refreshing break or start up your own business and become your own boss.
Redundancy should not be the reason for setting up your business, you should always do your research and fully understand the market you want to operate in, there’s a lot of commitment and hard work involved in starting a business, however, this can be a good time to consider pursuing and researching your own business.
2) Financial awakening
If you’re entitled to notice or redundancy payment ensure that you pursue and receive what you’re owed. This is your opportunity to rethink your income, learn to manage your finances, save, perhaps temporarily reduce costs, and make this the beginning of your path to financial education and potentially financial freedom.
A book I read years ago changed my perspective on full-time employment and “earned income”, this international bestseller Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki is a little US- focused, however, it advocates financial independence and building wealth through investing, particularly in real estate, it promotes starting and owning businesses, as well as increasing financial intelligence. The book challenges conventional thinking, explaining that it’s common for people to acquire debts or liabilities, mistakenly thinking that they are assets, and to work to pay for those expenses with income after tax, an example may be a car purchased on a loan, it’s a liability not an asset.
Income received from a job is “earned ”, it’s a common way to make money, by working for an employer and receiving earned income, you don’t need start-up cash to start a business or to invest, by saving it you can buy and invest, however, redundancy can be a wake up call when earnings stop and liabilities or expenses continue.
The book explains earned income is often taxed higher than alternative incomes, this won’t apply if you live in a country that does not tax earned income. The author , for example, recommends owning a business as profits are taxed only after expenses are deducted, an expense may include a car for example, but of course the risk lies with the business.
Take the time to consider, manage and plan your future income, I am learning, I am not a financial expert but it’s never too late to start a financial education, to have a financial plan, see a financial adviser, earned income is not your only option. Learn about creating “passive” and “portfolio” income and consider starting a part-time or full-time business, look at the internet to facilitate a business.
3) Taking inventory of your skills
Review your skills, assess what you’re good at, what your strengths are and what you love doing, perhaps look at doing some online training or a course; learn a new language or read up. You are born talented, do not suppress your talents with self-doubt!
It’s your own responsibility to keep your skills up -to- date, to manage your career, to take as much from a job as you give and to plan your career rather than put your fate in the hands of an employer.
Never stop learning or attending training courses, always aim to be marketable and to keep your CV updated. You should be aware of the options that are available to you either in the internal (company) or external job market, this doesn’t mean that you need to be less committed to your job or less passionate.
Get out of your comfort zone, after all the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein
4) New beginnings
“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.” Jim Rohn
Believe that greater things are meant to be! Look forward to new beginnings have faith and plan for them, consider what you really want to do in life and what your next steps will be to achieve your goals, perhaps consider a career change.
Redundancy happens! It has happened to millions of people, start thinking positively and seeing it as an opportunity, enjoy the present, be grateful for what you have, plan the future and don’t look back! Your thoughts?