"Your last day will be November 10th!" I can remember these words coming from the Human Resource Manager's mouth like it was yesterday. These were words that I never wanted to hear, and it is not something that I would wish upon anyone, but reality is, it happens. Companies or organizations reorganize, or they change the way they do things, and unfortunately, it might be you who is impacted.
For about a month after I was laid off, I threw a pity party. I took my severance pay, filed for unemployment compensation, and I decided I was just going to be a stay at home mom. NOT! That did not work for me or my kids. They were used to me being out of the house during those work hours, and I learned they were perfectly fine with me being gone.
So what do you do if you are laid off your job and a career is what you desire. You find a way to be productive until you can get back into the trenches. Here are a few suggestions:
Take A Class
Are there skills you wish you had but because you were working you didn't have time to develop them? Instead of doing like me and throwing a pity party, do something to develop your skills, so when you do start submitting for a new opportunity you have more to bring to the table. It is also a good way to explain the gap in employment on your resume if an interviewer were to ask. Continuing education classes at a community college are a valuable and inexpensive way to take some useful classes that will help you develop some new skills and make your resume look more appealing in the process.
Work for a Temporary Agency
Working for a temporary agency is the path I decided to take when I realized that staying home was not at all what I desired to do. I remember calling a small temp agency near my home inquiring about what type of jobs they had available. It was perfect timing. One of their clients had just contacted them requesting a data entry clerk. They needed someone who had good typing and 10-key skills, so the Recruiter asked that I come in to take a typing and 10-key test. This was on a Friday and by Monday I was working. The job didn't pay much, but I still had severance pay coming in so I was happy.
Volunteering can be very satisfactory and is certainly a rewarding experience. Volunteer opportunities are endless and unlike trying to find a job you are usually not turned down when you're offering your services for free. This might be the very thing to set you apart from other candidates in a job interview as well if a potential employer sees your willingness to make such a selfless sacrifice in your own time of need to find employment.
Turn Your Hobbies Into a Business Opportunity
When the COVID 19 pandemic hit I was thoroughly impressed by the number of businesses I saw opening. I know many people who opened businesses and are now doing what they enjoy and are their own boss. Three of these businesses are very near and dear to my heart because they encouraged me to take a leap of faith and open my own business. You should definitely check them out on FaceBook and/or Instagram.