Surprise you don’t have a job anymore!
Have you ever walked into a meeting only to have your brain suggest that it is not the meeting you expected it to be?
That is what happened to me this week. I went to a meeting that was supposed to be about communications outreach. Instead I walked into a room with my boss and two people from HR waiting for me. I knew what was happening before my boss delivered the news that this would be my last day with the organization.
Shock and Awe?
To be honest I wasn’t completely surprised.
The organization I worked for does important work and it is a pretty good work environment. That said, I never really clicked with the work. I wasn’t engaged or excited about the work I was doing. It was the first ‘real job’ where I have not woken up in the morning with ideas about what I could improve or change to resolve challenges.
My boss noticed my lack of enthusiasm and did what she had to do.
I already knew it wasn’t a long term job for me.
They gave me a push before I could jump.
Not my first rodeo
This is the third time I have been unemployed.
The first time was as a result of my own hubris and lack of understanding how to actually find a job. I walked into a job the day after I finished university that I didn’t have to apply for or interview for. When I left that job without lining up my next one, I discovered that job searching was much more difficult than I expected. Interestingly the next ‘permanent’ job I landed also occurred without an application or interview.
The second time I was out of work was planned. I went on parental leave after the birth of my second daughter. Due to some fortunate circumstances I was able to get severance even though it was always the plan that I wasn’t coming back from leave. I even left town and we moved during that period. I found work once without too much effort after I started looking.
This time it was not planned, but I have learned some lessons from my last two rounds at this show. It doesn’t really matter how I landed here. I am as unemployed as I was the last two times.
I have three kids and am the primary breadwinner in my family so I have a sense of urgency about finding a new job. I don’t have time to wallow in my circumstance. I just need to move on and get the process underway to find a new position to ensure I can pay the bills when the severance runs out.
- I met with a lawyer to review my departure package and a transition coach that my former employer is paying for to help me find my next position. I am fortunate to be able to do both of these things. I was not able to take advantage of either in my previous situations.
- I updated my resumé to reflect my accomplishments in my most recent position.
- I made a list of all of the contacts in my network who I need to connect with to let them know I am looking for a new challenge.
- I created to do lists in several categories to keep myself on track in the coming days
- I have searched job listings and set up a number of job alerts and signed up for some daily job listing emails
- I updated my LinkedIn profile
- I found a few jobs to apply for and started that process.
Next week I will:
- finish creating a daily schedule for myself – this and the to do lists help to stave off the rising tide of panic that frequently appears when unemployed and seeking work. It also helps keep me focused and motivated.
- meet with my transition coach again
- have my first networking coffee date
- submit three job applications
- begin my network activation in earnest
- finalize my severance agreement – assuming all the details get sorted out
- start to build exercise and more healthy eating into my day since I have the time
- chaperone a school field trip
- spend more time with my kids
- perhaps start going to bed earlier
I’ll probably document my search here to keep myself on track and motivated. In one of my previous positions I helped others find work and combined with my own experience looking for work I have a pretty good sense of the process. It occurs to me that some of you might find a guide to looking for work to be helpful so I’ll likely add one of those to my collection of dad guides. I do have a little extra time on my hands after all…