September 07, 2008
Losing your job isn't the end of the world
OVER the last few months, a number of my friends have lost their jobs, through no fault of their own. For some, their respective companies just decided to merge with other companies, and many employees were rendered redundant. For other friends, legal issues prevented their company’s principal from pursuing its investment in the country.
Whatever the reason for being cut from one’s job, the work prospects for anyone over 35 years old can be daunting, especially these days when they have to compete with a burgeoning young labor force that is faster, healthier, cheaper and more willing to multitask. Of course they may not necessarily be better than my generation of 40-year-olds, but we all know that during economic crunches prospective employers will always go for the cheap rather than the quality. In some instances, those who have worked far longer, and are armed with a more power-packed résumé, will find themselves being told that they are “overqualified.”
Before you even finally walk out of the company’s door one last time, first make sure you are given a severance package. Make your company’s human-resource department compute for every workday you were not absent, and for every credit (sick, vacation, birthday, holiday) not taken, and for every year worked. Also, make sure you secure a letter of referral preferably from the company chief speaking glowingly of your accomplishments and your work performance. (Click here for the rest.)