Employment Tips

WOW, it’s been a long journey for me since I was laid off a few years ago.

I remember that day.  It was so surreal.   I remembered I kept thinking  ‘Is this happening to me?’  Why was I picked?  I worked my booty off to do the best job I could do.   And this is the thanks I get?

Being in the IT field, I never figured that a Information Technology specialist would be laid off. I remember my supervisor calling me into his office, and there was the Big Boss sitting at a chair.  Then in a whirlwind, it was all over.  After I heard the words ‘we’re laying you off’ from the Big Guy, I don’t think I heard much of anything else they said.  Then they handed  me my walking papers, and I walked out of there with nothing more being said. Bing Bang Boom.  It was all over.  Just like that……

I went home in total shock.  I didn’t feel anything.  In fact it took a few days for reality to sink in. After a few days I thought to myself  ‘OK, so it happened me along with millions of others.  I’ll get another job.’ So, I picked up all the local news papers every day, looked online and sent my resume out to anything that looked right for me.

My god, it was unbelievable.  The job market definitely changed, and now there’s so much competition, and fewer job openings. On top of that the job responsibilities had definitely changed since I had last looked for a job, which was 6 years prior to my layoff.  I felt so awkward at the few interviews I had.  I always thought of the ‘should have’, and ‘could have’ after that interview. Well, after about 10 months, I finally landed a really sweet job as a contractor. It’s only for a 1 year contract, but god it feels so good to be back at work.  No more having to go to the food bank for assistance, or having to ask family for help.

I’m not sure I could have survived much longer on unemployment. I look back and during those ten months, I learned an awful lot about how to prepare for interviews mentally, and how to prepare to answer the usual interview questions. So, I wanted to share my top tips with you on how to handle unemployment, and mostly, being prepared for an interview.

Tips To Prepare For Unemployment

1.  Get up early in the morning.  Laying in bed all day feeling sorry for yourself, won’t improve your odds of getting a job.

2.  Create a daily routine of checking the online ads, and/or picking up a newspaper.  It would be just a one day add that could end up being your job.

3.  Keep yourself healthy by taking daily walks or exercise daily.  Exercise can help relieve the stress levels your experiencing.

4.  Update your resume, and if possible have someone review it to make sure there are no typo’s and it contains an accurate work history.

5.  If your feeling really down and out, keep a daily journal.  It can be electronic or good old fashioned paper and pen.   Just jot down what happened that day, or how your feeling.  Believe it or not, getting some of your frustrations out can be a wonderful stress release.    All of those bottled up anger or frustrations can be seen by potential employers during interviews.  And thats not something you want them to see.

Top Interview Tips.

1.  Make sure your wearing your best interview outfit.  It should fit well, and not have holes or tears.  This is going to be their first impression of you.  You should be looking your best.

2.  Keep a copy of your resume with you, in case the Interviewer doesn’t have one in his hands.  Your resume should not contain a list of references.  Instead you can offer to get that list if asked.

3.  Do your homework.  Check on the company history online or at the library.  You should understand what business the company is in, when the company started, etc.  Most of the time they ask ‘So what do you know about our company?’.

4.  After your interview, follow up by sending the Interviewer a hand-written thank you note.

5.  The most important tip of all, is to never lie.  That job may not last long if they find out that you’ve lied to them.  I have heard sad stories where someone will claim to have a Bachelors degree but didn’t.  Then the company checked  with the college and find out that this person never attended college.  Needless to say, he was promptly let go.  Dont’ get yourself in a situation like that.