Aug 312012

We were recently asked “What are the best tips for rebounding from a layoff?” Here is our response! 

Getting notice that you are being laid off hurts. You have now proven to be expendable, no longer worthy of employ at this location.

That kind of day can make you depressed for sure.

Like all depressing situations in life, you have a choice to make. You can decide to mourn, wallow in the loss, become petrified in the fear of how you will pay your bills or get a new job. Many people do…and they do it for too long.

Rebounding from a layoff requires a shift in mindset. People must realize that the only constant in life is change and changing jobs is merely a part of life. The days of working a lifetime for an organization with the promise of a pension to take care of us in our Golden Years is no longer a reality. You must take care of yourself, and here is the recipe to get back on track with your career.

Realize That Life Happens

Human nature reverts to feeling victimized during times of stress. Denial, seeking answers, blaming others…we all do it at first. We claim that situations “are not fair” and seek to justify why we have to deal with such a situation. We play the Blame Game.

Realize now that some things are beyond our control and when an employer decides to cut ties with us, the responsibility for finding new work is solely on our shoulders. We must take steps to increase the chances of finding employment and that comes from developing a plan to get back to work for a new employer.

Take an Inventory

Once the shock of receiving a notice of lay off has worn off (typically 2-5 days) the next step is to realize what we have to market to employers. In order to do this we must make a list of our:

  • Skills
  • Experiences
  • Accomplishments
  • Education & Certifications

This information becomes the framework for our marketing materials (aka your Resume) to present to employers.


The next step is to identify companies that hire people like you. Research companies by industry, geography and the market they serve. Search out people with job titles similar to your target job on social media websites such as LinkedIn and realize that their employers hire people like you. Search out people with job titles that would be responsible for hiring someone like you. Identify Networking opportunities, online and in-person, that you might be able to attend to meet people in your industry.

Build Your Resume Effectively

Create your resume using a strategic methodology (of course we recommend the format taught in the GigSpire Program) that will appeal to all levels of resume reader. Ensure that you incorporate Keywords specific to your targeted industry. Build Search Engine Optimization (SEO) characteristics into your text to increase the chances of your resume surfacing when recruiters look for people with your skill sets. Post your resume in multiple locations (job boards, forums, social media websites) and be certain that any social media profiles reflect the same information in your resume.

Start Talking and Networking

No one is going to talk about you looking for work unless you get them talking. Get on the phone and tell everyone you know that you are looking for work. Ask if they know anyone who might be able to connect you with an opportunity. Attend networking events and mention that you are on the job search and see if the people you chat with are aware of any people who are hiring. Make calls into companies that hire people like you, regardless of if you see a job posted on their website.  Get conversations going to ferret out opportunities!

Get an Interview Buddy & Practice Interview Questions

As soon as you find yourself on the job search, immediately find one or several people that you can trade interview questions with daily. Practice your answers to common interview questions as well as your Elevator Pitch. Get feedback to become better and more comfortable presenting yourself and answering questions with stories of accomplishment that will help people understand you are a good worker.

Find a Support System

Seek out other people who are on the job search and meet with them regularly. Often groups meet through religious organizations, community outreach, government programs or even through social media websites. Meeting with others who are experiencing job search challenges will present you with ideas to consider, pitfalls to avoid and support and encouragement by the members of that group.


Too many people become discouraged and give up, believing that jobs do not exist. That is not true.

Thousands of people find jobs everyday. You can too. Create a mindset that you WILL be successful in your job search as long as you work smart!

Follow the steps outlined above and you can rebound from a layoff!