It happens every week. I work at my desk completely absorbed when up pops that email. The email a lot of recruiters can relate to. The one from the client contact that never really was all that warm and fuzzy to deal with. The one that took their time getting back to you but didn’t offer much patience when the situation was reversed. Yup. That client. Well, life has a funny way of turning the tables on folks and there’s some rule about “do unto others as you’d have them do unto you”…
That rule comes into play when the email flashes up. You see, this is an email that is utterly unexpected, yet fairly common. It’s the email from my client that never had time to network or make professional friends, saying that he has been let go. Something about new leadership, new direction, mix in a little office politics and his personality not gelling too well with the new GM’s style and we now have one freshly unemployed Manager.
It’s unfortunate, but I’ve gotten those emails more frequently than I can count. Every single time I try my level best to help the person. Initially they are in shock and disbelief- they always remark about how long it’s been since they’ve been in the job market~ on the “other side of the desk” they say.
Well, welcome to the other side.
It’s tough navigating those waters when you’ve been out of it for a while, but that’s where a good recruiter can really help you.
Here are a couple of life-lines I’d throw out to those of you who are completely comfortable in your role. You think you are secure. Heck, maybe you are. But I’d caution you that it’s really painful and expensive to be unprepared~ so it’s worth your time to take heed to the following insights:
1. Network, Network, Network! Career Networking is vital. Don’t wait until you are unemployed to do it! NOW IS THE TIME.
2. Invest in your professional friendships with Key Decision Makers. These are the people that need to know you, like you, and who you want to be close enough to that when you become unexpectedly unemployed~ these people will pick up the phone to recommend you to another KDM.
3. Really go out of your way to have a genuine friendship with a Recruitment expert. Recruiters are undeniably a tremendous resource and the day you get a pink slip is a poor time to strike up a conversation about what YOU need. Sure would be great to have them know you, respect you and like you prior.
4. Keep your Resume current. Notice I said “current” not “floating around”. Big difference. (Read my post on Greener Grass)
It’s a terrible feeling to be unemployed, in most any situation. Feeling helpless and isolated, depressed even, are common emotions. The one thing I’ve found that creates positive energy and action is feeling connected with lots of people that are encouraging and ready to help you. Now is the time to build those relationships! You’ll be busy right up until the day you’re downsized… trust me, the executives that were always too busy to bother with being connected now tend to have a lot of time on their hands.
Don’t let this happen to you!
True kindness, genuine friendships and going out of your way to open doors of opportunity for others throughout your career… do these things and you’ll be amazed to see how folks are happy to help you if they have a chance!
Lauren Goodson, Founder and President of Cornerstone Recruitment Group and Career Expert Academy http://careerexpertacademy.com is a nationally renowned expert in Job Search Strategies, Career Coaching and Hiring for the Professional audience. She has helped thousands of job seekers to achieve their potential and grow their career. Through CareerExpertAcademy.com , Lauren has redefined professional job search training by establishing an all-in-one resource for extensive and exceptional expert information. Be sure to visit http://careerexpertacademy.com for more info.