8 Ways to Bounce Back Quickly After a Layoff

You just received the alarming news: your employer no longer needs your services.

As you’re handed a pink slip and a few weeks’ worth of severance pay, there’s probably a jumble of thoughts going through your mind about your layoff, career and financial stability.

The fact that you’re definitely not alone doesn’t make you feel any better—particularly since you know that the job market is tight and economic recovery is still in its infancy.

It’s important to understand that it often takes more than simply dusting off your old résumé and hoping for the best to land on your feet after a layoff.

By following the 8 tips below, you’ll not only improve your current situation, but you’ll also put your best foot forward and bounce back quickly after a layoff.

1. Let yourself mourn a bit, but not too much.

Take a few days off to contemplate your career, your life, and your goals.

During this time, feel free to gripe to your friends and family about your layoff. If you let your emotions out instead of bottling up your anger and fears, you’ll be in a better position to move on to bigger and better things.

2. Update your résumé to current standards.

A paper résumé just doesn’t cut it anymore.

If it’s been five years or more since your last job hunt, you’ll want to do some Internet research to see what has changed regarding the creation and distribution of résumés. You might be surprised to learn that your next employer prefers video resumes!

3. Take some time for yourself.

If you were pulling 12-hour shifts for the last 10 years, take some time while you’re in between jobs to go to the gym, freshen up the paint in your kitchen, or just hang out with your friends and family.

4. Talk to recruiters and career counselors.

Find out where the opportunities are and where your skills and experience fit into the picture. A good counselor can help you select a path that you may enjoy even more than your previous career.

5. Go back to school.

Depending on how long it takes to find a new job, you may have time to enhance your knowledge and skills in the classroom.

Check out your local community college’s continuing education offerings or surf around the Internet for the many online options that have cropped up over the last few years.

6. Create a plan for success.

Put together a game plan that includes all of your job hunting, educational, and life goals. Review and tweak it as needed, and refer to it often.

Record your progress on the plan, which will serve as a valuable benchmarking tool during this between-job period.

7. Watch your cash flow.

This isn’t the time to buy a new car or purchase that new, second home on the beach. Since you can’t be positive when you’ll be getting a paycheck again, now is a good time to guard your savings and live a bit more frugally.

8. Network, network, network.

Reach out to business contacts and friends alike.

Take them to lunch or meet them at your local Starbucks for short pow-wows. Tell them about your situation, discuss employment possibilities, and pick their brains. You may be surprised at the valuable connections you can make with these simple moves.

How did you survive a layoff and land a great job?

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