You can prepare for redundancy: here's how

Friday, December 30, 2016 09:00

Dan Hughes by Dan Hughes

Experts predict that by 2025, 50 per cent of occupations existing today will be completely redundant. How would you cope knowing that your role was marked for termination?

READ MORE: Redundancy and re-entry training

The truth is, for some people, being made redundant feels like a career killer, simply because the shock, anger, or denial is enough to throw them off track. For others, having their job role removed is just the nudge they need to move into a different industry or go back to training in something they have a passion for.

I went through this experience three times between 2009 and 2012. I graduated in 2007 into what was soon to be a disastrous global recession, and there were a few things I learned from those experiences that I thought were worthy of sharing.

You can prepare for redundancy
Very often, there are indicators or clues within an organisation that your role or multiple roles are likely to disappear. These might be poor financial performance, automation, cost reduction exercises, mergers or restructures, for example.

You can prepare for this mentally as well as take steps to look ahead at your future careers plans.

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How to prepare for redundancy

  • Keep your CV up to date – it will save you time and make sure you are ready for the future.
  • Get feedback from your colleagues, managers, customers; anyone you work with.
  • Get advice – your organisation may provide change management workshops or one to one sessions.
  • Identify a mentor, aka someone outside your situation who would support you.
  • Don’t go into denial – get as much information as possible and accept that the outcome may be unfavourable.
  • Don’t get stuck in the blame game; ultimately, it won't help.
  • Don’t act on rumours; they may be just that.
  • Ask questions.

Redundancy is not a CV ‘black mark’ or a failure
In a majority of cases being outplaced is not your fault and is certainly not viewed as a negative by future employers. In fact, bouncing back from redundancy can be seen as a strong achievement, as it shows resilience, resourcefulness and motivation to succeed.

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Top tips for turning redundancy into a positive

  • This is a great time to consider your options. Do you want to stay in the same line of work or try something new?
  • Don’t let anger be your driver – it’s an emotional time and the sooner you channel your energy into making your own luck, the better the outcome will be.
  • Use it as a scenario in interviews to answer questions on resilience or where you need examples of challenges you have overcome.
  • This is also the perfect time to reconnect with old friends, former colleagues and others in your social network to find new opportunities.
  • Clarify ideas - follow your curiosity and identify your interests.
  • Remove 'the block' - wonder “how I can...” rather than “I can’t because...”
  • Expect the unexpected - be prepared for chance opportunities, such as unexpected phonecalls, encounters, impromptu conversations and new experiences.
  • Take action - Learn, develop new skills, and remain open. Follow-up on chance events.

If you are currently at risk or have recently been made redundant, coaching is available through our expert consultants.

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Posted in Careers and Training