The Layoff Lifeboat

By Deb Perelman  |  Posted 2007-10-24 Print this article Print

: How to Get Back to Work"> "There is a lot of tension, and the next day, youre not raring to go. I gave myself a week or two to take a vacation, sit outside, look at the clouds and not work," said Muskovitz. He had been able to buy himself a little bit of time by negotiating a severance package [See Tip 10] beforehand, but even if you have not done the same, its okay to take a day to get your head together, especially if you have until the end of the month, for example, before your job is eliminated.
Yet even if you have advanced noticed, its important not to flip your bosses or coworkers the proverbial bird or act in any way unprofessional.
"The most important thing to do is to realize that the company did not want to do this. It was a last resort. So serve out your time, be a professional and hopefully make some connections. Be the guy that left with class, because it keeps that door open for you if business conditions change," Jim Lanzalotto, vice president of strategy and marketing at Yoh Services, a provider of talent and outsourcing services based in Philadelphia, told eWEEK. 4. Cut Back On All Excess Expenses, Get Insurance The unemployment office may be a sobering event, but the visit is rarely as mood-killing as receiving the first check itself. While the exact amount received varies from state to state, in general it approximates 50 percent or less than your weekly earnings, with a set maximum that also varies by where you life. Read here about ten flubs to avoid in a tech interview. At best, once your severance (if any) runs out, youll be living on half your prior income, and there will be no choice but to cut back on any and all excess expenses. "The longer you can hold out, the better for everyone," explains Muskovitz. Health insurance must be arranged as well, and even though it will cost an arm and a leg (no pun intended), it is essential that you remain covered, or you will do yourself an unintentional disservice. "Every time you change jobs, your new insurance will demand proof of continued coverage, or they will only give you limited benefits for a period of time," Muskovitz said. 5. Perfect Your Resume In general, unemployment insurance lasts for 26 weeks (about six months), but in times of extended high unemployment, benefits may be extended by 13 weeks or more. Nevertheless, once youre done moping, arranging unemployment pay and health insurance, its time to get down to the brass tacks of job hunting and buff your resume to a high shine. Of course, not everyone agrees that you should wait until you need a new job to get this in order, in fact many argue that you should be updating it even when your next job hunt may be years off. "I really believe that the process of updating your resume should not be an event-driven thing. You should always be updating it, to be ready for both internal [and] external activities. Maybe there is a promotion you want, or a move to another department… Dont let anyone make you feel that you are disloyal to keep it updated. If youre in charge of your brand, this is your brochure," said Lanzalotto. Your resume should be flawless; as this is not a place where mistakes are easily forgiven. There should be no typos, it should look clean and neat and it should be totally coherent. Page 4: The Layoff Lifeboat: How to Get Back to Work


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