You know, I just peeked out the window of my house after hearing loud talking coupled with the steady whirring of machines. My nose has picked up the scent of gasoline not to mention smoke. I can’t believe it Vic the landscaper is back. I excitedly run to the kitchen calendar where I notice Memorial Day is just around the corner. Bye Bye brutal Winter with your biting cold winds. Summer is just about here. Yep, I’d have to say it’s party time. So let the partying begin now! PARTY ON!
The annual office Memorial Day BBQ is being held at the beach this year. Heather is going to be wearing a bikini that has practically nothing to it. She is going to make Hannah Davis look modestly dressed. Me and the guys are going to be wearing thong bathing suits that are so tight we are going to be bulging when we come out of the cold water. Plenty of beer plus vodka will be on hand. Wasted on the beach wearing practically nothing. Even John the boss will leave his gray suit with his array of black ties at home to join the fun. John in a thong! This is just going to be one amazing party. The party lights we got from https://musiccritic.com/equipment/disk-jockey/best-party-lights will arrive next week. Throw in the extra paid day off we get I am just so psyched. This will be one of those events you don’t want to miss and will remember for years to come.
Fast forward to that first day back at work after the extended weekend where we witness a radical change has just taken place. The firm has just been sold! People are being fired all over the place. Is this is a joke John is playing on us? This can’t be happening! We have all just been fired. KLM Marketing where we have worked for ions is history. We were given our last paychecks, cleaned out our desks under close watch, and escorted out of the building. John who was the best boss anybody could ever ask for was nowhere to be found. He got his handsome share from the sale without so much as a goodbye or an explanation or a few extra bucks to thank us for our hard work all these years. John left so quietly that you could hear a mouse walking on carpeting.
Where do we go from here? We have some money in the bank but that won’t last forever. All the expenses we had that we had previously handled with ease are now coming due all at the same time. What about sleep away camp for the kids? Our vacation plans and certainly not least of all is how do we pay the mortgage on the house? As sudden as a flashbulb in a camera going off our lives have been turned upside down.
For most of you out there, this has never happened to you before. Hopefully, most of you won’t have to be prepared for this and you’ll never need a second thought this could or would happen to you. All those stories you heard about company A buying company B with the next thing you know hundreds of people were out of a job. Despite the stories, you felt safe as there were no rumors, or even if there were, John would just smile while telling us it’s all just a silly rumor started by somebody. Nothing is changing except he may take on a new partner for additional capital for the firm and that was going to be it. That announcement should have immediately set off a fire alarm in your head. Chances are as the old saying goes “where there’s smoke there’s fire” was about to come true.
Like so many others, you chose to ignore the warnings. As such you did little or nothing to prepare yourself for what might be coming. Even if the rumor turned out to be false, having contingency plans under the “what if” scenario could not have hurt. I am not trying to come off as a “know it all” just because I am a recruiter. Believe it or not, it has happened to me plenty of times. In many cases, I did not even get the last check. A change was made I was told to leave that there was no last check. Nobody knew who I was nor especially cared.
So now, hard as it seems, you have to move on. Yes, you know about recruiters, internet job boards and so on. What about Social Media especially LinkedIn (LinkedIn is great for job search. But you have to learn how to use it for that purpose which is one of the most powerful tools you can have at your disposal.) Rarely will you find anything job-wise on Facebook? Try if you wish, but remember you need money now! You need to engage in networking in addition to job fairs in addition to turning to “non-traditional” sources.
In between sending out resumes, you should be looking into picking up new skills so that you can increase your value causing employers to need you again. The College kids will find their way even if they are popular due to their age with the added advantage they can be paid less with no immediate need for benefits. Self-improvement courses should be coupled with work behavioral or job sourcing skills outside of what you already know.
As for your immediate needs, go online and apply for unemployment. That is money you have paid into the system for years. The process is not fast, with the added caveat of being treated poorly, even though once again it is your money. The company being sold was not your fault. As nauseating as this may seem, Public Assistance may be a necessary option. You may wish to speak to your mortgage lender as I am not an expert or possess deep knowledge of mortgages to see if you can modify your mortgage in a way that allows you to extend your term (not the greatest idea) to save money every month or perhaps skip a payment or tow and tack those payment onto the back-end of the loan.
Don’t fight this fight alone. Networking Groups are great to be in, as you have others who you can help, while helping you in return.
Everybody has a different idea or strategy. Some ideas will work for you, but not for others. Take something from each idea and from there create your own plan of action.
Get rid of the notion in your head that Summer is not a great time for job seekers. Temp workers are needed (they can lead to permanent jobs) as manpower shortages are everywhere due to vacations. Even if Temp only means Temp, it still puts money in your pocket plus gives you a new reference not to mention showing how transferable your skill sets are to a multitude of industries.
As Johnny Maestro sang; “The Worst That Could Happen” just did, so do you have to do whatever may be necessary (sometimes there may be more painful steps that must be taken) to survive. With determination, planning, thinking, not to mention a little luck you will get through this. I wish all of you the best.
Since it is Memorial day please take some time to remember the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives so that we can have the freedoms we enjoy today.