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How to re-brand and re-frame when you are made redundant


Carrying on with my theme of re-branding, there is never a better time to put yourself through the re-branding process than when we are made redundant.

The general consensus of the redundant people that I have met is that in their multitude of feelings they experience, elation is usually not one of them, and most people feel horrible if not tainted by the experience. When it comes to interviews they feel ashamed of themselves, like it is their fault and embarrassed to admit to people what has happened and that they were selected over their colleagues.

However, the reality of life is that most people will experience job loss at some point in their working lifetime, but this can be hard to accept when you are not expecting it and unless you have lots of adaptability, optimism, and mental resilience to help you.

So, how do you pick yourself up when you are feeling awful and need your next job?

The best thing to do is be practical. Mentally you need to tell yourself to move on, and remember this isn’t your fault. Even if you weren’t the best performer, it really doesn’t matter anymore because you are where you are. Financially you will probably sooner or later need to get a job so it’s best to get on the case straight away and try and beat any other competitors speed-wise to the jobs.   So, therefore, get the CV up to date and get your online profile on Linkedin adjusted to “currently seeking opportunities”.  Load up your CV onto the job websites and firms that you would like to work for, and send it off to all the recruitment agencies  or headhunters that place people in your job market. Make sure you are labelling yourself in the right way with confident sentences and descriptions on the CV.

Make sure you utilise any outplacement services being offered to you, and get out there and meet as many recruitment consultants as possible. Make sure you get feedback from every recruitment consultant on your CV. If there’s something on there that isn’t going to help you, you need to know.

Get some personal business cards printed, and I would recommend two batches; one batch should have your name, email and  telephone number so that these can be used for anyone, and another set with all the same data but also your industry or profession on it, and maybe something quirky on it, like a phrase that sums up what type of professional you are, and a personal interest. If you meet someone and you don’t have a CV to hand, it’s a pretty good alternative.  You need to then get out and network with as many people as possible at events, but also try and remember that connections made can come from your family and friends gatherings, so always have some to hand.

Then you need to work on yourself. You need lots of false confidence, as confidence begets confidence in others and eventually yourself. Try and stay positive and realistic. You need to work out your strategy for dealing with the awkward questions on the redundancy at interviews. People may probe further on why you were selected but remember that every interview you will get something out of…even if it is a bit of practice at getting better. Speak positively about your employer and explain it away with cost cutting and downsizing.  You also need to take a long hard look at what you are offering.  Find out from your peers and your management what words they would use to best describe you and if they were giving a verbal reference after you left, what is it that they would say? If they are truly honest, there may be something you need to work on to improve. Work out how to describe yourself in the interview to your best advaantage and memorise that phrase.  You may also want to do a SWOT analysis on your career and personal strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. If you know that there are some areas that could do with some time spent on them, then focus on them. You will have plenty of time on your hands before you get that job.

Maybe it’s time to smarten up your appearance and get a new interview suit or haircut. Sometimes we can get a bit sloppy when we are used to being in the same job for a while.  Small things can make a massive impact on our confidence particularly when it’s been knocked a bit.

Finally if you are going through the redundancy process whilst all of this is happening, I would suggest you act graciously and keep on good terms with the management, HR and anyone involved in the process. If you have a smooth exit out of the firm, it guarantees an opportunity to potentially come back and work with them again in the future.

If you require any help with regards to the redundancy process, coaching or advice relating to re-branding, please don’t hesitate to contact me on: or 0203 369 8955.

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