Dealing with redundancy

I know that this blog post may have the possibility of being read by people who may have employed me or even potential future employers, let me put a disclaimer out there to begin with: I won’t name names but I will be honest.

This blog post was written to inform others and help those dealing with the struggle of being made redundant. 

My Experience

On one of the last days of February 2017, I was told that I was being made redundant. I was devastated, but no words appeared to come out of my mouth. I simply nodded my head, listened, signed the dotted line and left.

Being told that you no longer have a job with nothing else to go to is more than devastating. It changes your life, and you don’t know when it will make a U turn.

One day prior to the one year anniversary that I had been with the company, staff were sat down and told of the events that were going to happen and why. I will never understand how we were meant to process that information at 4:15pm when we were due to clock out at 5pm. One of us bumped a car on the way home, and the other one only just avoided that too. The anxiety must have been brewing in the boss’s office all day, but I can’t give sympathy for the decisions that were made, the way that it was done, and the expectation of normality that was meant to resume while the boss holidayed in Disneyland days following the announcement.

I’ve never known anybody else that had been made redundant at 23, hoping that their career was just getting started after trying for so long to find a suitable job after completing university. It was difficult to process, but I had some great support from immediate family and friends – some people though didn’t understand how difficult it was to deal with. I was distraught at the thought of not knowing where my next pay cheque would come from, when I would find a job again, whether I would have to settle for something I really really didn’t want to do, if i could pay my bills etc and the list goes on.

I’d say it probably took me about 3 months to ‘get over it’ and feel like the world was my oyster again. I’ve been looking for a dream job (in media, marketing or digital marketing, content writing and social media) since that time, but for now I’m plodding along with a medical admin job and enjoying lie ins on a Wednesday.

How to cope

Depending on the circumstances or the terms of your employment’s termination (whether you have been made redundant or fired, are on garden leave or not etc) you might deal with the situation differently to me, but this is what I did.

  1. Obviously I sought professional advice regarding the situation, how to word things, what questions to ask and how to respond.
  2. Obviously I started applying for jobs like crazy the following day ( and continued this for weeks, almost daily)
  3. Obviously I cried and vowed that i would never forgive that employer (I’m over it now, but I wouldn’t want to awkwardly bump into her in a coffee shop because I would definitely pretend I didn’t see her there…)
  4. Obviously I got over it and now I’m happy that I don’t work there anymore ….yay

I spent a month having lie ins, going to the gym every day, doing whatever I wanted and I enjoyed it. I still felt down at times, and frustrated with the situation, very held back and felt like I was falling behind everyone my age at no fault of my own, but I distracted myself with other things and put my head down into trying to find a new place of work.

Luckily, I found something straight away. That won’t be the case for everyone, but I feel I have to point out that I’m not in my dream job right now, just a stop gap.

What I learnt

For peace of mind, I know that I want to work for larger companies from now on. I feel like I’ve been burned and I don’t want to take a big risk like that again (for now).

I felt that there were things I didn’t enjoy working for a very, very small company, (of which I honestly didn’t think to ask the size of in my initial interview). I want to know I’m definitely going to be paid (and paid in full) every month, and I enjoy working within professional corporate environments.

Ask questions. If you’re not sure on something in general or regarding your employment contract etc ask your employer, don’t ask your colleagues because you don’t know how accurate their advice is?

Take some me time: enjoy the little things you’ve missed. Go shopping in the day and miss the traffic, do new things and take up old hobbies.

Keep your connections. It was me Vs a friend, one of us was going to go and we were both feeling guilty that one of us would be leaving. We’ve stayed very good friends and talk practically every day.

Finally, always seek professional advice, do your research and learn what you are or are not entitled to if facing a potential redundancy.

Moving on…

If you have been made redundant recently, I hope that this little blog post helps you realise that you’re allowed to feel upset, you’re allowed to be seething angry for however long you want – but you will find another job (if you try) and you will get over it and definitely move on to bigger and better things soon. One of my favourite quotes will always be:

Every day may not be good but there is something good in everyday.

Take it in small steps, work to find work and you’ll come through the other side, I promise. Have a good day, and good luck job hunting or whatever you’re doing!

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