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How I Lost My Job, Part Two

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Diary of a FireeThis is part two of a two part article by Sarah, one of my friends who was recently let go from her job. This is the inaugural story of the Diary of a Firee series, which will chronicle her search for a new job. Here is part one of How I Lost My Job.

As many of you know, it’s harder than ever to find a job. Our economic times are not the best, to say the least, so competition is fiercer than ever. If it’s a good job for a good company, even fiercer. I was in an interview the other day and the interviewer told me that there was exceptionally high competition for the position I was applying for, not what I wanted to hear.

But I wasn’t in “panic” mode yet, I still had a job. It was uncomfortable but I had a paycheck. As I went into the office each day, I’d ask myself, “What will I do today that will subject me to being picked on?” It’s not a good feeling. If you cannot communicate effectively or be friendly in a professional way with your boss, without worrying that you’ll be picked on, it makes for a pretty difficult work environment. It’s especially puzzling when you could do just that a few short months ago. One of my close friends there said: “It sounds like they are trying to make you quit, whatever you do, don’t quit!” On some days, it was really hard not to just walk away. (Remember, qualifying for unemployment is difficult if you quit!)

Communication was poor, the vibe was off in the office, the boss was in meetings all the time. I knew what this meant, they were building a case against me. I was hurt. Why? What did I do? Everything seemed so bizarre. Why was my job at stake? Didn’t I just get a glowing performance review? Or was it a funding issue? Did they not have the funds for the position so decided to make a case to get rid of me? I’ll never know.

The Axe

One afternoon, I was called into a meeting with my boss. I knew by the look on his face that I was walking to my execution. I knew I no longer had to worry about how I was going to be picked on because I had walked into the office for the last time. That day was my last day. All my intuitions and assumptions were right. They gave me no reason for my departure, I assumed it was a reduction in force of some kind. I left the meeting trying to be positive because I knew I did my job well. You can’t control what the higher heads have decided to do, all you can do is perform your best and try to find a new place of work, soon, and fast.

It was a bittersweet blessing. I had been unhappy my last several months there and I had interests in pursuing other areas. The powers that be simply made the decision for me, they simply pulled the plug and ended that misery. Now I have the chance to pursue other things. In a tight timeframe for needs of financial income, but I have a clear mind and a full time week of hours to dedicate to my next step.

The Next Steps

So how do you prepare for finding a job in any economic state? There are many suggestions out there I’ve come across.

  • Networking is always top of the list. Networking should begin before you start your new job search. If you haven’t already or done much networking before, start now, don’t be shy. It’s never too late. You have to aim for what you’re looking for; no one else knows your desired path. I was part of a volunteer group with members that have my professional interests so I turned to them for suggestions. I also informed my friends and family. You never know what positions they might be aware of.
  • Recruit more than one job recruiter to market you. Post your resume immediately to a well known online employment site; more than one if you can. This goes along with specific company websites that you can post your resume on their site if it’s an option. The online job search websites offer many job services if you need help with resumes and cover letters including other helpful tips.
  • Look for and attend every job fair. There are free ones, look at local colleges, they typically have job fairs often. Though you might not find a company or a job at the first or any job fair, you get to talk to companies and keep your job search and your mind job focused.
  • Stay dedicated and driven, you will find a new job. There will always be bad interviews before that right interview for the right job comes along. It’s like a relationship in a sense. A lot of bad dates before the right one comes along.
  • Visit your state’s unemployment office or website. See if you will qualify for unemployment pay and fill out the appropriate forms as soon as possible, you have no time to waste!

Finally, remember that your friends and family will support you through this difficult time. Don’t hesitate to turn to them if you need help.

{ 12 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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12 Responses to “How I Lost My Job, Part Two”

  1. It is never fun to lose your job but is sounds like you weren’t enjoying it anyway, there is something out there for you.

    • Sarah says:

      Thanks all. It is bittersweet indeed, and at least now I can focus a large portion of my time dedicated to finding a new job. And ‘ticktalk’, you were right on the nose with the office politics comment!

  2. MoneyNing says:

    Great story! Remember to stay positive and keep looking. The time off might be a blessing in disguise so have fun and get rested for all your hard work!

  3. Sarah’s writing is fantastic. Has she ever done it before?

    I’ve never been laid of myself, but like I said in the last post this is exactly what happened to my brother. The company is actually worse now because of it too.

    I hope Sarah finds new employment really soon. She deserves it.

  4. ticktalk says:

    Been there, felt that. Here are some similarities between your experience and mine: The first to be chosen to tackle the challenging but higher-paying responsibility. The most adaptable, adept, and competent at nearly everything. Too self-reliant. You did your job and could do everyone elses and as such you were a threat to the mediocre. They liked you when you performed miracles for them, but your integrity kept you from saying bad things about others and everyone knew you would stand up for the truth (and even expose it) and as such you weren’t “in the club” of social bad-mouthing – and really, why would you be? – They were insecure and you were confident. They were weak and you were strong. They banded together to keep you on the outside, blamed you for anything, and kicked you off the island. It’s called OFFICE POLITICS.

    Ignored, blamed, fired. That is the sequence. I remember it too well. I wrote this blog exactly 6 days before I got let go: http://www.briankeithanderson.com/blog/2008/05/11/confession-in-the-fire-swamp-day-of-reckoning/

    Consider this: you aren’t “worker bee” material, you consistently outperform. You aren’t executive material, you aren’t a cut-throat liar in office politics. You are Founder/President/CEO material. Start doing what you are passionate about.

  5. thomas says:

    I would say sorry you got the boot, but it sounds like this might be a great thing for you. It sucks to lose money so I hope from that angle your fall is short.

  6. Laid Off says:

    It sucks to be laid off but it is a chance to pusue your dreams. All the best to you!

  7. hustler says:

    Sounds just like what goes on where I work. There aren’t enough funds to keep everyone, but they refuse to lay off. To avoid having to pay for unemployment insurance, they make you want to quit. Good for you for hanging in there and making them make you leave. You also have the opportunity to hold on to your insurance through cobra.

  8. Patrick says:

    It does suck to lose your job like this, but at least you are probably far happier than in an uncomfortable situation like you were in.

  9. Jerome says:

    I feel your pain.I was let go from a job as a hotel front desk clerk.I worked there for 4 years.suddenly this past friday i was let go.saturday an ad in my local paper advertising my old job was published.seems pre planned.Manager claims i made one too many mistakes on the job.However i was never written up or shown what mistakes i made.my ex boss unprofessionally let me go via her personal cell phone outside in the parking lot.people tell me to consult a lawyer.my local labor commission was no help,they told me that since i live in a ”at will” state they can do nothing about it.how could i make mistakes on the job i did for 4 years.i trained her then she got promoted to manager from secretary position.if anywhere i get a job in the future can easily let employees go without cause why even have a job.

    • Jerome says:

      i’m not afraid to mention the Hotel’s name

      Econolodge
      3470 Cerrillos rd
      Santa Fe NM 87507

      for what they did to me they deserve to be exposed.

  10. Exterminator says:

    why an employee can’t fight. What kind of impartial rules are happening in USA economy. Who is protecting the employee finally.
    All is a piece of junk.


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