4 things you should do if you have lost your job
No doubt, the COVID-19 crisis has produced massive layoffs as shown in the unemployment numbers. In March Canada lost over 1 million jobs pushing the unemployment rate to 7.8%. April was even more devastating to the job market as close to 2 million jobs disappeared causing the unemployment rate to sore to 13%. The month of May saw a bright spot emerge from this crisis as the COVID-19 curve started to flatten and confinement restriction started to lift in many jurisdictions. The result, many individuals were called back to work. In May the economy added 289,600 jobs but the unemployment rate remained stubbornly high at 13.7%. If you are still unemployed there is a possibility that you will be called back to work but do you really want to base your future on this possibility or do you want to be the driver of your success.
1. Deal with the shock of losing your job
You may experience an array of emotions after you have lost your job. You should acknowledge these emotions but do not get caught up in them as they will prevent you from moving forward. Chances are that others within your organization and network have also lost their jobs as well. You may want to reach out to them and share your experiences to help overcome the shock.
2. Tap into your network to help your job search
Building on dealing with the shock the next thing would be to reach out to your network of family, friends, and business colleagues. Sharing that you are open to job opportunities will allow the people around you to help identify new career prospects. The message you should be sharing is what you want to do next and less about what happened. For example, “as a client facing sales representative. I was one of the first to be let go due to the COVID-19 crisis, but as the situation is getting better I am looking forward to finding another client facing sales opportunity as I love dealing with people”.
3. Review your finances and job support programs
Take the time to review all the government support programs that are available to help individuals cope with the COVID-19 crisis. Make sure that you establish a timeline on how long the support programs will last and how much you expect to receive. This is important as you will need to adjust to a new budget. Your expenses should be reviewed and adjusted accordingly. You should only be incurring basic living expenses such as food, shelter, medical, and transportation.
4. Invest in yourself to increase job skills
Invest in yourself by looking for potential opportunities and programs where you can improve your employment skills. The government has skills and development programs available that you may benefit from. You may also allocate part of your new budget to taking a course or completing a certificate that will help you transition to a new job.
Summary: You are not alone
Remember that you are not alone during this difficult time. You should reach out to your network as they are an excellent resource to help you find a job. You should also leverage the professional services of a financial advisor as they would be able to help you review your financial situation and develop an action plan to get you back on track.