First thing to do when you get a layoff notice

I was listening to a friend talk about his layoff this weekend…. he had zero days of transition from his last job to his new gig.  He related something like this (in my own words):

“I got laid off two months ago and I immediately started my job search…”

There’s more to his story, but as far as this post is concerned, that is the most important thing I want to share.  Since I lost my job, 8+ years ago, I have met plenty of people who have gotten a layoff notice, and had a few weeks or a few months to prepare for the next job.

I’ve also met plenty of people who have some kind of sweet severance, giving them months of normal income before their income goes away. The story I hear the most is “I’ll start looking for my next job in six months, when I get close to the severance running out.”

Folks, the time to look for a job is (personally I feel like it is ALL THE TIME, but if you hear you are getting laid off, or think you are going to get laid off, START LOOKING…) NOW!

My friend got an eight week notice, and by the end of eight weeks he had a job lined up.

That is a much better transition than I had!

2 thoughts on “First thing to do when you get a layoff notice”

  1. Oh Jason, I couldn’t agree more. I see clients all the time whose plan of “waiting til the severance is running out” leads to an extended unemployment that turns employers off. I recommend starting the job search promptly, but taking some scheduled time off after that – a 2-week vacation, or a few personal days – just as you would when working. If the layoff left you wounded, work on healing – but not by being unemployed for months.

  2. Although the economy has improved, layoffs are still happening. Almost exactly 5 months from today, my company did a layoff that no one saw coming. It was the first layoff in almost 5 years. Your resume, cover letters and network should always be given attention and be up to date. This post maybe the jolt that I need to update my resume for the first time in almost three years. It is easier to update your resume and cover letter when you are relaxed versus when you are frustrated, worried and desperate.

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