You may have known it was coming, or it may have hit you by surprise. Either way, redundancy can make you feel a whirlwind of different emotions. The key thing to remember is ALL of these emotions are normal, and it is your job to validate them. Here are six tips to help ride the redundancy wave:
Your contract terms, redundancy terms and pay, can differ from one employee to another. Therefore, make sure you touch base with your Manager and/or Human Resources department to go over any questions and concerns you have prior to your contract terminating. These conversations may be challenging to navigate, but you will thank yourself for noting the facts sooner than later down the line. For more on the legal issues surrounding redundancy read the Citizens Advice redundancy section.
No matter your age and experience, a situation like this can always bring up a lot! So be sure to pause, take a moment to be mindful and possibly even grateful for the opportunity? You will get there! Like all challenges in life, you will most certainly look back and see how this chapter connected other dots you could have never seen forming otherwise. Resiliency is an art, but it does take persistence and a need for you to be kind to yourself in the process.
Once you have gathered yourself, take some time to reflect. This is an essential step to practice. Consider; what did you enjoy about your role? What elements made you melt into your free-flow state? What factors made you challenge your thinking and learn new ways of doing something? What are you going to miss? Also, be honest - what did you not enjoy? What would you rather not repeat for your next role?
To help, you could use a resource such as the Strengthfinder book. It enables you to hone your strengths and has some great questions to reflect on and practice examples as you go through your five key strengths. In addition, the national career services have some useful tools that you can use for free.
Once you’ve considered your position and priorities, it’s time to update your CV, so you're ready to apply for new jobs. If you're still at work, ask your HR department to have a look at this for you. If the whole company is organisation, ask for a written reference in advance.
Next create your plan of attack when looking for a job, consider keywords and locations that you would be willing to work. Next go onto niche job boards where these jobs will be advertised, such as publichealthjobs.co.uk. On these sites you can often subscribe to job alerts to keep on top of your search, these then go directly to your email address. It’s also worth occasionally checking the website for the organisation you would like to work for, as sometimes they are not always advertised on job boards.
Lastly, if you have a social media account, such as twitter, it’s a good idea to scroll through feeds and see who is recruiting. You can take advantage of the hashtag function too e.g. search for #publichealthjobs.
If you can't find the job you want straightaway, consider other options to increase your income such as temping or working part-time.
Your research for potential new job opportunities is essential, but make sure networking forms a big part of this timetable. Embrace it as an opportunity to re-connect with former colleagues that you may not have been in touch with for some time. Ask them where they are currently working, explain your situation, and express which locations or areas of public health you would like to explore. You will be surprised how many doors open.
Networking your way through LinkedIn is also a good use of time, as it enables you to connect with people and professional organisations within public health. You can invite anyone to connect (and accept their invitations to connect with you). Once you've made your connections on LinkedIn, the Messaging facility allows you to have real-time conversations with them.
Balance is essential, and applying for a job is in itself a full-time job, so be structured with your time - take it seriously and set boundaries with your family and friends. Avoid getting distracted by people asking you to complete errands and tasks that take you away from your priorities.
Work out which time of day (or night!) your motivation and concentration are highest for your job hunt, and make sure there are dedicated time blocks for this. On the same point, avoid going into the rabbit hole of job hunt non-stop as well - you need to have time to re-charge and do the things you enjoy, investing in hobbies, spending time with loved ones, etc. You will not be able to shine on your strengths if you are running on low reserves, so make sure you look after your mind, body and health in the process.
When you join our newsletter, you'll be able to download our free Public Heath Career Management Programme - a collection of advice, templates, resources and videos. It is designed to become yourersonal career management system. This shoud get you up to speed and look out for more blog posts like this in the future.
Jyotsna Srinath, Public Health Analyst at Essex County Council, kindly answered some questions about her public health journey.
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