Title: Getting a job after you are fired.
Published in The HINDU Opportunities on February 29, 2012
Link to the published article
With the global economic crisis and uncertainty in our workplaces, getting fired or being laid-off is a bitter incident that could have already occurred in your life or one that you are likely to face in the future. “Getting fired is a lot like getting divorced,” says Steve Johnson, Vice President of Information Systems for R.L. Stevens and Associates Inc. a leading international career marketing firm. All you hear is ‘I don't want you anymore' and the feeling of being rejected.
Here are some thoughts on how you can overcome this setback and move forward positively and confidently towards achieving success.
Looking into yourself
Whether you were fired for poor performance or were let go because of company downsizing, now is a good time to do some self-examination. Own your success and your failures. Gather the inner strength to get up and move on instead of mulling over past mistakes. Learn from what went wrong in your last job and be aware of your own errors and focus on how you can look forward to making new opportunities click. The best way to do this is to understand what strengths you have and how you possess the wisdom to know the difference between opportunity lost and possibility found.
Know yourself, have a plan, make an impression. After you are fired, the power needed to transform a job loss into a catalyst that gains job offers is simple and straightforward-
Identify yourself. Untangle your sense of job from your sense of self
Chart a five-year plan for career and know what steps you need to take to get you there
Stay in focus and be persistent in your efforts even when you face obstacles and rejection
When was the last time you took a vacation or a break without having to worry about asking for time off at work or having to carry your laptop with you to stay in touch with your colleagues? Take a vacation now to clear your head and get a fresh perspective. It is a good idea to not lose focus of your job search, but try to make use of the extra time that you have available. Starting an exercise regimen and working out on a daily basis will help keep your body and mind recharged. Pursuing a new hobby or renewing a lost interest in an area that you enjoy will keep you happy.
Finally, use the time to gauge how much time you are spending with your family now and if your next career decision needs to take that into account, as well.
Exploring options and getting back on track
Instead of moaning about the loss of employment for more than one working day, welcome your firing as an unexpected career advancement to move up to the next level. Update your resume, polish your interviewing skills and equip yourself by knowing the latest happenings in your field. Start talking to ex-colleagues and network with friends who may act as potential leads for the next opportunity. Explore options on transforming your work experience into being a consultant. Using multiple career marketing strategies simultaneously will ensure that failure is never an option.
Don't limit your choices to only what you truly want, but, be willing to make compromises and stay flexible to land yourself the next position.
It is easy to look at successful people and envy their situation. What you often don't see is the story behind what they went through to get there. Many successful CEOs and top people are ones who have been fired from positions in their professional careers and been through painful experiences. What set them apart are the lessons that they took away from such challenging experiences and not repeating those mistakes. Here are some common pitfalls to avoid: Don't take your job for granted. Take the time to clarify expectations early on in the job with your boss to avoid unpleasant situations and lastly, don't put all your eggs in one basket.
Remember to constantly look out for yourself and don't assume that today's promotion or raise will make you an irreplaceable employee. You have to keep raising the bar.