You’ve lost your job- Now what?

what to do when you lose your jobLosing a job, especially when it is unexpected, can throw your career prospects sideways. You probably had no control over the events leading up to the termination. But, you certainly have control on how you handle the loss.

As a major executive recruiter, some of the candidates Key Corporate Services works with have gone through this experience themselves. Our years of experience in the job market have given us some insight on basic truths regarding how best to handle the loss and move on. We share these thoughts below:

Stay calm

The initial shock of losing a job unexpectedly can stir mixed feelings of frustration and anger. Regardless of the urge, don’t take your frustration out on your now ex-boss. You may need a reference from the old boss. And, you don’t want others in the industry hearing something negative about you handled bad news.

Accept help

Most companies terminating employees are committed to offering exit services that could assist in helping you find another job. These services could include free workshops or new skills training. These can enhance not only resumes but also improve job prospects. So, it only makes sense to take advantage of these timely, free services.

Make a plan

Needless to say, the loss of a job causes financial strain. Establish a new financial plan and budget that allows you to try and keep on top of your household budget, with a reduced level of income. Determine how long your savings will cover expenses. Come up with a workable plan. Know that your financial fears may be over-exaggerated to the reality of the situation and that you may have more time to find a job than you first feared.

File for unemployment

While it may not feel comfortable to file for unemployment, do it anyway. The extra income will help and you may also find that you are offered some useful assistance with further training to boost your resume.

Start networking

Start working on updating your online social media networking sites, specifically LinkedIn. It’s critical to update your online profile. Use LinkedIn and your professional network and get in touch with anyone who may know of a job opportunity that could be suitable for you. Also, be sure there are no inappropriate postings on any social media sites like Facebook you wouldn’t want a prospective employer to see.

Prepare yourself for an interview

Start working on your interview skills. Practice your presentation at home. Write out the answers to those commonly asked questions, not to memorize the answers, but to formulate your thoughts and responses.

When you lose a job, take a couple of days to decompress, calm down, and refocus on your strengths and self-worth. Then, start designing strategies to find that new, exciting job.