Worried about Job Security – What should you do?
Are you worried about job security? Maybe you must make a decision about your future, but aren’t sure what the right move is? Are you getting told your job is safe, but something doesn’t feel right?
Maybe it’s Brexit related or maybe not. Perhaps you are last in and face being first out. Or there is talk of layoffs and it could be you. Whatever the reason behind it, the worry of being let go and not being in control of how you will pay the bills is weighing on your shoulders. You could have a family to feed. A mortgage to pay. Other responsibilities.
So, what should you do?
My own Dad has been laid off three times in his life. The first time he panicked and got really down about it. The second time he got angry. But the third time, with a bit more wisdom he played it smart.
The constant worry and pressure of facing being let go it can make you think irrationally. Companies will always want control of their staffing. They will understandably want to hold the cards on when and if you leave. If there are talks of redundancies, the work is quiet, and the leadership looks a bit out of shape it’s easy to figure out something is wrong.
The problem is when you seek reassurances rather than solutions
In my Dad’s situation on the first occasion he listened to the leadership’s assurances that all is well. This was despite the fact that orders were dropping, and he was being sent home from work to save on hours in the weeks running up to it. Furthermore, the more experienced guys had started moving on in the calm before the storm. They went quietly and didn’t make a fuss. Because they knew what was coming.
He was told it was only a temporary drop in orders and sometimes this happens. Even though all the signs were there he sought reassurances and not solutions. Eventually one day he came in, was sat down and let go. No fuss or emotion. No regard for all the work and dedication he’d put in. He put a brave face on it, but he was crushed.
The second redundancy
My Dad had worked his way up over two decades in a household name public limited company and was in a senior management position. When the redundancy came the wording was a “Corporate Restructure”, but my Dad saw it differently and I cannot repeat what he referred to it as. Never the less he was angry. He got a good pay out, but still needed to work. He took the first thing he could and regretted it and had to change job again soon after.
The final redundancy
My Dad is now retired but took a job in the latter stages of his career with another household name in senior management. This time though he knew that at any time he may face a “corporate restructure”. He knew that he may not be given official warning. That keeping an eye open for potential signs of problems was a wise idea. And when it came about, he made the wise move, made sure he had arrangements in place well in advance, took his pay off and walked out with a smile.
The power of hindsight
After experiencing an unpleasant, stressful and challenging event such as redundancy it’s easy to reflect on it once the dust has settled. It’s another thing making the right call when you don’t know what to do and it’s never happened to you before.
Making the right decision
If you see the signs that your job is on the line take control of the situation. Don’t hesitate and seek reassurances. The signs typically start well before the event. Months usually. Don’t be that person who waits to see what happens despite knowing deep down that it’s just a matter of time.
Typically, redundancies concern multiple people and from the same departments. The unwise move is to wait until you get a modest pay out and then face competition from all of your colleagues for the same jobs elsewhere. Where as the wise move is to make your move before everybody else unless the payout is worth waiting for. The early bird catches the worm.
Seek solutions, not reassurances
A solution is getting a secure role rather than an unsecure role. It’s finding a job you want, rather than taking something to fill a stop gap. The solution is taking action, being honest with yourself and buying yourself time.
Seeking reassurances is trying to find what you can to stop you worrying about losing your job. That could be a reassurance from your line manager, a Director or HR. It could also be getting your head down and working hard to try to convince the powers that be to keep you on board and let others go instead.
Your career is in your hands, your job isn’t
It is easy to get angry, vocal and frustrated. But letting your emotions show won’t help. It will just leave you exposed. It’s like playing poker and showing your cards to your opponents. Keeping your head down, quietly making a move to leave the company and concentrating your efforts on getting the job you want is much smarter. A career is your working life, a job is just a period of it.
Who should you listen to for advice?
Neutral parties with a level-headed mentality. Better than that someone who has faced redundancy before and played it smart. But whatever you do, don’t listen to people who just want to moan and groan and get you more worked up. What would that solve?
When you spot the signs, and they tend to be fairly obvious unless you choose to ignore them, that redundancies could be coming take action. Don’t shout about it. Be quiet. But start looking, consider your options and find a secure job you want in the calm before the storm.
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External Links: https://www.money.co.uk/guides/how-to-cope-with-redundancy.htm
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