Recently, the Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados warned that things will not get any better and that there will be more job losses. I read that there were over seven hundred new claims for unemployment with hundreds more expected in the last quarter of 2011!
What would you do if you were one of those seven hundred people? You would still have your bills to pay, children to feed and a household to run. And if you don’t have an emergency fund, you would definitely be in a bind. This is a situation that could send anyone into depression and thoughts of hopelessness and despair.
Five Things to Do If You Lose Your Job
If I was one of those seven hundred people here is what I would do:
1. Update resumes
I would update my resume and have several of them for the different industries that I was planning on applying to. I would add any key skills that I gained at my previous job. Depending on the nature of the job loss, I would contact a former supervisor or manager, to ask permission to list them as a reference.
This would be my obvious first choice after updating my resume, and I would apply to as as many places as possible. I would check through the newspaper, explore the internet and talk to friends and family. Depending on the type of field that I was in, I would show up in places that would need someone with my skills. For example, if I was in construction, I would visit a few sites to see if I could work for a few hours or days. It never hurts to ask a question or ten.
3. Put those talents to work
I would definitely make use of the talents that I have. People often overlook their talents, but in a time of need they can be a life saver. If you can braid, advertise your services to your neighbours, friends and family. If you’re good at landscaping and maintenance around your home, offer your services to the people in your neighbourhood. When you lose your job, your talents can bring opportunities that you never even thought of.
If you put your talents to work, it is highly likely that you will find business growing. From here you have the option of continuing to grow your business or continuing your hunt for a job. Many people have become entrepreneurs because they lost a job and refused to give up on being employed. It will not be easy, but you know first hand, that working is not always easy.
People might gripe at this because this might cause you to spend more money than you would like to. But, in the long run, it could be beneficial. And there are courses for any and everything right here in Barbados and the Caribbean. The Barbados Vocational Training Board offers courses for unemployed and unemployed people. I did an Interior Decorating course with them few years ago and I thought that it was excellent value for money.
If you lose your job, remember that it’s not the end of the world. You are merely shifting to another phase of your life. It’s up to you whether you make it through this rough phase successfully.