NO WAY! You're Firing Me? What do I do Now?ūüėĪ

Compassion comes in unique ways and forms. A simple smile can better the day and change the life of a troubled person. As for those who have been recently made redundant or are feeling anxious about the possibility of termination, let this 10,000-word eBook be your light on a gloomy night. Navigate your life with the help of The Perfect Resume team. This eBook is compassionately prepared to give our readers hope and practical advice during an extremely challenging time.

Redundancy can be a very difficult experience, both emotionally and financially. It can feel like everything is against you and that you will never find another job. However, it is essential to remember that many people have gone through and survived redundancy and even unfair dismissal, including The Perfect Resume's Founder. There are things you can do to make the process easier for yourself. This eBook contains information on dealing with the emotional impact of redundancy, managing your finances, and how to search for a new job. It also includes stories from real people who have been through redundancy to offer you a light at the end of the tunnel.

It's OK to feel scared about an uncertain future; however, there is no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed if you have been made redundant. It may be a harrowing experience, but you are not alone. We have a compassionate 1:1 outplacement process that will put your mind at ease.

 

The Top-5 Feelings Associated with Being Made Redundant

The Top-5 feelings associated with being made redundant

As for some, they might have a hunch ‚Äď a strange feeling that they might be removed any time soon. So, every day, they slowly accept this bitter pill and prepare for when this big bad day might come. Alternatively, many are not given enough time to come to terms, and the news could have come as a surprise and devastated you. Knowing the process that you need to undergo and expecting the unpredictable emotions that will pop up is crucial to moving forward.

The following are the most frequent emotions that come with being laid off:

  1. The initial shock of being rejected for ongoing employment with the company. It is normal to feel disbelief and numbness when you are first notified of your termination. This may be mixed with feelings of anger, betrayal, or sadness. Remember that these are all normal reactions to an unexpected life event.
  2. The stress of being unemployed. Once the initial shock wears off, you will likely feel a great deal of stress as you face an unknown future, especially if you have always been the one taking care of others. It may compound any previous feelings you already had of insecurity, fear, or inadequacy.
  3. The fear of the future. It is common to feel afraid about what tomorrow holds when unemployed. You may also be concerned about the potential future of not being able to secure a new job, resulting in financial hardship or needing to burden your family or friends if you can't afford where you live anymore. Further, you may be worried about how to support your immediate family and how this change will impact their life.
  4. The loneliness of not having colleagues around you. It is natural to feel a sense of emptiness when you no longer work with the people you have spent hours every day building relationships with. In the early days, you'll find that your colleagues will offer regular catchups for lunch, etc. However, they will also start moving on as daily life creeps in. When this happens, you may feel like a fish out of water and not sure how to spend your time.
  5. Uncertainty of the job search evolution. The job search process can be daunting, especially when you do not know where to start. This added stress can lead to feelings of frustration, impatience, and hopelessness. Remember that it is normal to feel all these emotions; it just means that you are human. Contacting a career transition services consultant with The Perfect Resume can help you to work on counteracting these negative feelings by ensuring you know what to expect, how to prepare for applying for jobs, and building your confidence to shine like a star at your new job interview.

    These are all valid emotions that you should not hold in. Bottling up your feelings can lead to health problems down the line, so it is important that you find healthy ways to express them. Joining a support group, talking to friends and family, or seeking professional help from The Perfect Resume team can be great options for you.

    If you have been made redundant, your company may offer to reimburse your resume writing package cost, ensuring that you get our assistance for free. We can provide career advice to help you make the best step forward and assist with any resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile updates, as well as interview preparation. Through a contemporary outplacement process, we can help you shift your attention and energy toward planning for a rewarding future.

    How to Replace Irrational Beliefs with Rational Ones

    How to replace irrational beliefs with rational ones

    Having an outsider's perspective from someone who is a neutral party will assist you to look at your present or future career development options logically. Our career coaching services and outplacement training sessions can help you to: 

    • Close the gaps in your experience or skillset.¬†For example, if you worked with the employer you had for a long time, you may have been promoted without the presence of formal certificates. We can help you demonstrate "relevant experience" to overcome this nuance.
    • Identify your skills and experiences that will help you stand out from other candidates:¬†Employers want to see a balance of technical and transferable skills on your resume, in a cover letter, or even on your LinkedIn profile. We have outplacement solutions to help you identify what these skills are in a job advertisement and tailor your resume to showcase your potential.
    • Refine your job search strategy in accordance with today's modern recruitment technology, such as algorithms, artificial intelligence, and applicant tracking systems (ATS):¬†Unlike other mass-produced, outdated outplacement models, we are a unified team who genuinely¬†wants to help you land on your feet and feel confident about your future again; therefore, we keep up to date with the latest trends to reduce the job search stress, eliminate any unnecessary rejections and ensure your application is read by a human not rejected by a robot.
    • Create an action plan to achieve your goals:¬†The outplacement services can help reduce job search stress, develop an achievable plan that considers your skillset, experience, and interests, and then equip you with the tools you need to win your next job application.

    If you have been made redundant, please get in touch with us here in The Perfect Resume, and ask how you can get the Redundancy outplacement services package for FREE. An outplacement service includes a 2-hour consultation, followed by 12 weeks of email and telephone support.

    Remember that the job search process can be daunting, but it is also totally normal to feel frustrated, impatient, and hopeless at times. Do not wait until your emotional cup is filled, for eventually, it shall pour. Find healthy ways to release them. You are not alone in this journey; The Perfect Resume team is here to help you keep your feelings and career in check.

    CLICK HERE to view the outplacement program, outplacement process, and outplacement solutions available.

    After you have reviewed the packages, forward the Outplacement Services page to your employer. They can purchase the package on your behalf. Or, they can get in contact with us so we can lessen the impact for you.

    In the meantime, to further support you along the journey, this eBook will help you understand the emotional stages individuals go through when coming to terms with any change. By diving deeper into this resource, you'll understand your current mindset and how you can get yourself to a point where you are ready to move on. 

    OH NO! Change is on the horizon! ūüėĪ

    Have you ever felt like your life is out of control? Have things changed so much in the last few years, or even just recently, that it feels as if everything has shifted orientation and momentum without warning?

    Life is all about change. You need the confidence and commitment to determine your future career goals, engage in the career transition support you need, and, if you need, purchase the career services to ensure that you have a competitive edge against others. In doing so, you can make positive change happen!

    Yet, how do we know you are ready to ride a new, challenging tide in your life? Is it when your career no longer feels fulfilling or empty? Otherwise, are you someone who is likely to hang on until the very end ‚Äď when everything falls apart, and there is nothing left for yourself or those around you? Maybe the stress symptoms, such as low energy, headaches, muscle tension, and other physical indicators, have been present for a long time, but you have been ignoring them.

    Pause. Breathe deeply. It's totally OK.

    Let's be proactive about your career transitions ‚Äď embrace it! Reading this eBook is a sign of positive change ahead! While other people are starting to crumble around you, it's time to consider your options.

    Besides, what benefits will ultimately arise from holding yourself back?

    Change is scary, but also necessary!

    Change is scary, but also necessary!

    Knowing what has worked until now will be beneficial in future steps toward success...or maybe the new change might work out better for you in the long run! Therefore, it's essential to continue to the next step with confidence.

    When it comes to chasing a new job prospect,¬†you may find yourself feeling frustrated and hopeless as you analyse the sheer volume of job advertisements, knowing the odds are stacked against you. With 13M employed people in Australia and 190+K jobs on Seek, each position will likely get hundreds of applications, yet only one person can secure the job. When these statistics start weighing you down, it is critical to remember there is always a silver lining in any dark cloud. Your dream job could be right around the corner ‚Äď just waiting to be found.¬†

    Giving up is easy! However, no one ever became successful by throwing in the towel. A lot of people in your situation will complain about how many jobs are being advertised but then give up after reading just one or two sentences. They won't be inclined to give the hiring manager a call to clarify the salary on offer or other benefits available to them. Therefore, you can be proactive in your job search. Harness this new, fresh change. Accept this transformation as an opportunity to explore a future, more exciting, more rewarding career. 

    We may be facing a competitive job market; however, there are still jobs out there, and the best people for those particular jobs are filling them. You can't let your competitors fill up all of the space in your mind. You have to focus on what YOU are doing and make sure that it will help you to be successful at whatever role comes your way. 

    Sometimes, when we don't know what's best for us, our bodies and minds take on more than one person should handle at once. Luckily there are ways around some common challenges

    You can increase your self-esteem and confidence levels by: 

    You are powerful beyond measure
    1. Having a clear idea of what YOU want from your life. It means understanding yourself as an individual and feeling empowered to make decisions regardless if you don't have the evidence to know if what you choose is right. 
    2. Make sure your decisions are aligned with who you are and where this will take place. What are you passionate about or not interested in doing anymore?
    3. Know who you can turn to for help. The Perfect Resume team can help you get closer to achieving¬†your¬†goals without being too pushy or dismissing them at first glance (like your family mightūü§£)

      Getting these answers allows you to be more confident in making life-changing decisions, for example, changing your entire industry as Sarah did! We also must remember that permitting ourselves now doesn't lead to regret later! So, where possible, avoid making emotional decisions. Instead, weigh up the pros and cons, then make a logical choice. 

      So you're looking for a new job?

      With many available and possible routes at this stage, you need a guide to point you toward the right and best way ‚Äď something The Perfect Resume specialises in! From finding your perfect match to negotiating salaries, many different strategies and options work best with each individual's needs in mind ‚Äď all without giving up control or letting someone else decide what is right for them! Whether you need to make adjustments to your long-term goals or evaluate your expectations, we recommend taking the time for self-reflection because it is vital to make considered decisions when facing such an emotional change.

      Feeling a bit paralysed about your next career move? It's OK; just be honest with yourself.

      The activities in this article will help you understand yourself better to help you make informed decisions. It's entirely up to you whether or not you do any of the activities offered or choose the ones that make sense to your availability and life situation. Either way, we hope you find them helpful in problem-solving the obstacles you face. We aim to empower you to think outside of the box. This move will help you consider all options available to you, especially when life gets too busy!

      Whether you think that your ultimate career direction is already clear or not, completing the activities in this article will help affirm what path suits you best. Remember, the output from any of the exercises you achieve will only be as good as the responses you provide in the first place. It's essential to keep in mind that no one will be judging you on the exercises unless you give them the power or permit them to do so.

      If you're feeling anxious about the prospect of change, redundancy outplacement services can help you focus on the positives, enabling you to prepare for an enjoyable journey.

      Looking and applying for new jobs can be stressful for some and a breeze for others. If you are struggling, we can show you how it doesn't always need to feel that way. There are bound to be times when anxious feelings arise; however, these exact moments offer an opportunity. They give us motivation, awareness about what direction our lives may take next, and the time we need to weigh up which choices will make our lives easier.

      We help aspirants transition from their current career to one they've always wanted!

      "What do you want to be when you grow up?" is a question that every child has an answer to. They might say things like "a doctor." Perhaps their desired profession will involve teaching others, saving lives, or driving on a race track! There's no wrong answer here! The key message behind this polluting phrase being what we're told at such young age is that we set simplistic expectations of life after high school. Instead, these responses should inspire us to think about our own potential career paths before quickly deciding upon anything. If you are considering a career change, it might be worth contemplating if it is time to go back to school and pursue the career you have always yearned for. 

      Don't be a victim of circumstance. Let us help you find the role that's perfect for you!

      Continuing the line of questioning from above, how many children aspired to be a Business Analyst, Career Consultant or Geneticist? We know there are tons of awesome jobs worldwide, but we only get to hear about some of them! That is why it can sometimes be overwhelming when you're starting to come up with your next big career move.

      The life we end up living is not always what we want, but it can be a fulfilling one. The joys in our lives come from unexpected places and often surprise us when they happen - this might mean there are other options for your future besides following the dictates and mandates of formulaic thinking about work-life balance or choosing to do nothing at all!

      The Perfect Resume | 96% success rate

      One of many paths could lead to your perfect job!

      You might be surprised to learn that each time you change jobs, get promoted, or take on new skills and responsibilities, you influence your career direction. This detail may be unimportant at first, but it forms a very interesting (and informative!) career pathway when mapped out. When this is projected, there are so many options, all with successful future outcomes! At The Perfect Resume, we can help you determine a career journey that fills you with excitement and matches your personality, lifestyle, and desires. 

      An open mind and experience can refine your career path!

      Throughout your working life, you've been acquiring and developing knowledge that can help provide the valuable experience to make a good resume. But this same skill might label or 'typecast' you in the eyes of prospective employers, as well as yourself; it's crucial for everyone who wants success on their own terms ‚Äď both professionally AND personally ‚Äď to continuously strive towards becoming more than what they were yesterday!

      But what if it's time to consider a new career path?

      What will you do when your current job no longer suits or satisfies you in any way? What will you do if the hours are too much of an effort for something that doesn't pay off financially at all? Don't get me wrong; I'm not telling anyone they should leave their secure jobs without first thinking about how long this process may take. What I am saying is it could be worth looking beyond those roles which seem similar because everyone deserves to be happy. If your current position is no longer filling you with excitement or you are finding you have had the same spot, but with different employers, it's time to consider whether a new opportunity in something outside your field could be what you have been waiting for. Through some of the exercises in this article, you will learn how to significantly open up the possibilities available to you. 

      People make significant changes all the time!

      You may decide to do something completely new or pursue an opportunity with a familiar company. But, if you haven't considered all of the feasible alternatives thoroughly, don't limit yourself to pessimistic thinking, such as "I could never do that" or "I'd love to do that but..." While we recognise that your personal circumstances may hinder your success rates, such as the aspects below, it's also essential to not use them as an excuse to not move forward in life.  

      Personal circumstances that may hinder your success rates

      Whether you are making a slight adjustment or pondering a life-changing decision, you need to improve your interview skills and leave any personal struggles at the door to give your best performance under pressure when answering tricky interview questions. It's hard when you feel exhausted, hopeless and stressed; however, it's a necessary evil because if you look stressed and unhinged in a job interview, the hiring manager will take you at face value and then write you off as a 'red flag'.¬†ūüö©

      Getting through the initial shock and grief to cope with being made redundant

      Moving on after a job loss is a personal challenge. Whether you are just out of work for a few weeks or several months, dealing with being terminated might be difficult. You'll undoubtedly want to know why it's happened to you and how it will affect your resume. You must be aware of two things if you have been laid off:

      1. You are not the only one who feels this way ‚Äď you're not alone.
      2. It was most likely nothing personal.

        When a company faces financial, legal, or industry challenges, the senior management team must make difficult business decisions. It may result in staff being made redundant, leaving employees feeling resounding rejection and heartbroken if they are unsupported. On the other hand, the remaining employees may feel guilty, for they were able to retain their jobs, and executive-level employees can get the feeling of being failures because they couldn't come up with the solution to keep the business afloat. 

        When it comes to which employees the executive team selects for termination, it is valuable to understand that these decisions are not based on luck or anything personal. Instead, these extremely difficult and heart-jerking decisions are STRATEGIC. Their only concern is ensuring they have the skills and experiences to ensure the organisation survives into the near future. It's not easy to hear you've been laid off, but try to accept it as soon as possible and start strategically planning for your future. Further, the company is obliged to support an exiting team member through the redundancy process, including outplacement support services if they are performing large-scale redundancies, such as resume writing, job search training, and interview coaching.

        If all parties have followed appropriate legal procedures, they must choose who stays and who goes based on a set of selection criteria. Managers then apply the selection criteria consistently and fairly in making their decisions, including assisting exiting employees to come to terms with the reasoning behind the decisions. If you were offered a redundancy package, it is because the company couldn't place you in alternative positions within the company, including transitioning employees into other departments, or you simply didn't meet the skills and experience criteria. It's as simple as that ‚Äď it wasn't anything personal, and you didn't do anything wrong. In terms of the question: "How is this going to affect my resume?" the answer is, it shouldn't, provided you are honest and explain it adequately to the next employer. If you speak with one of our consultants, we can coach you on how to frame this in a positive light.¬†¬†

        Are you or existing employees angry and want to take legal action?

        If you or other former employees feel the selection criteria process was conducted unfairly, you may wish to consider taking legal action. The difficulty with marching down this path is that while you concentrate your efforts on building your case and focusing on the past, you may tend to put any future plans of rebuilding your life on hold. As such, the decision to take legal action should not be taken lightly.

        If you do wish to take legal action, be prepared for a long, costly and challenging process. Most employment law cases are decided in favour of the employer, so you may not be awarded any damages. However, even if you don't win your case, taking legal action can still be a valuable process. It can help you fully understand the nature of your claim and the decisions made so you can move forward, knowing you stood up for your rights. To do so, you will need to prove that the selection criteria they used to decide who to terminate were not applied fairly, which is highly subjective. You will also need to prove that you were harmed by the selection process, which can also be problematic. 

        Don't try and represent yourself, even if you are a seasoned lawyer! 

        Coming from personal experience of being unfairly dismissed, this will be an extremely emotional time for you; therefore, you are likely to focus on the unjustness of the overall situation rather than researching your legal defence. On the day of your court hearing, all your research goes out the window anyway because your personal integrity is aimed to be squashed by the organisation's representatives. After all, their job is to protect the company's reputation, so the easiest way to do that is to discredit everything you ever did for the business. As such, it's best that you reach out to a law practice to discuss your specific case and the possible outcomes. If you are concerned about the costs, pro-bono practices are available with 'No Win No Fee' guarantees.

        Clearly, your actions may have financial consequences, which is why we are not suggesting that you abandon your job hunt strategy. Instead, consider each issue separately, rather than focusing solely on your case and waiting for it to be resolved before you consider applying for new job opportunities. Further, the court proceedings are made publicly available online, and news can travel within industries like wildfires. Suppose you work in a small industry where everyone knows everyone. In that case, you need to weigh up the benefits of winning a case versus not being able to secure a job in your industry as you'll become a high-risk candidate for the new employer to take on.

        Managing Change One Step at a Time

        As humans, we are creatures of habit. We like to know what to expect in our lives, and when things change, it can be difficult for us to adapt. It is especially true after redundancy or when your job description or daily routine changes. However, if we don't manage change well, it can lead to job dissatisfaction, bitterness, anger or even depression.

        The key to controlling change is to take it one step at a time. Don't try to do everything at once ‚Äď that's overwhelming, and you're likely to give up. Instead, break the process down into practicable tasks and goals. For example, if you've been made redundant, your task might be to update your CV, research the job market, and network with people in your field.

        It may seem like a lot to do, but you'll be surprised at how much progress you can make if you take it one step at a time. Remember to reward yourself for each task that you complete as this will help keep you engaged in the process.

        When change is upon us, everyone will progress through certain stages at different paces, including: 

        Some seem to go through all stages in mere hours other's can take months or even years to bounce back.

        How to get over redundancy in minutes, not months!

        Do you know someone who seems so cool, calm, and collected all the time? They never seem rattled by the crisis at hand. They are always super organised; these people have a plan and a backup strategy if Plan A fails. If Plan B goes sideways, that's OK because they'll research and get Plan C up and running in no time at all. To some people who really struggle with life in general, on the outside, these people look like a superhero. However, they can't make themselves invisible, walk through walls, hear your thoughts or control others. Instead, they have a constant stream of consciousness and an active self monologue on the inside.

        An internal monologue, also called self-talk, inner speech, inner discourse or internal discourse, is a person's inner voice that provides a running verbal monologue of thoughts while they are conscious. The spoken mutterings that occur while they complete tasks are usually tied to a person's sense of self. Most of the time, they keep this internal monologue to themselves. Sometimes, especially if they are under more stress than usual, they will let it slip out, and you might actually hear it. When you ask them, 'Sorry, are you speaking to me?' they will chuckle and say, 'Sorry, I'm talking to myself!'

        While an internal monologue is a common occurrence, not everyone experiences it. Researchers have yet to uncover why some people frequently "hear" an inner voice and what it means. But when it comes to getting over redundancy in minutes, not months, this is an example script that you can rehearse, learn and talk back to yourself when you catch yourself spiralling out of control.

        Imagine your favourite superhero sitting on the tallest spire in the city muttering...

        "What, I can't believe I've been fired...
        They must have made a mistake...
        I really don't want to deal with an outplacement program...
        My life is going to fall apart...
        It's a disaster, I'm screwed, I'm going to lose my house and family...
        Pull yourself together!
        I didn't like the job anyway...
        Maybe, outplacement programs will give me the push I needed to explore other positions...
        Alright, [insert chest stretch here] Let's do this!
        [As they fly off the tallest spire in the city they scream...]
        Woo Hoo! I'm going to get a pay rise!"

        Feeling the highs and lows

        Everyone needs to progress through all the stages we have listed above, whatever the degree of change being faced. What does vary is how quickly we go through each step and whether, at any point, we slip back to a previous stage. For minor changes, we may not notice the transition between each milestone, but for more significant changes, such as being made redundant, we may become stuck at one particular stage for days or even weeks until we come up with a solution to the problem. When this happens, you must seek help. You can waste valuable time frozen in analysis paralysis. If you seek professional help, they can give you an outsider's perspective, help you brainstorm alternative solutions, and point you in the right direction with the tools and resources you need. We can be that ear when you need it. Simply reach out and have a chat with us or email us at info@theperfectresume.com.au.

        Persevere ‚Äď you can't skip stages!

        Whatever the change you are facing, you need to understand that the universe will not let you skip stages. You can ask the universe for clarity to get through the stages quickly, but your mind needs to process the shift in routine. Think of the steps like a formal Work Instruction for Processing Change ūü§£ So, when you are thinking about how you have reacted to a current situation, the first thing you need to do is identify where you are along the change journey, understand the barriers this places on your emotions, then write down the pros and cons to decide what the best option to take is, so you can move forward to the next stage.

        Answer these 5 questions to gain clarity

        You may already be or are about to be made redundant. Whatever the change you are facing, ask yourself the following questions:

        The Perfect Resume | 5 questions to gain clarity
          • Where am I on the change curve right now?
          • What am I currently feeling?
          • What steps can I take to progress through this stage?
          • If you feel stuck: What problem needs to be solved to help me move on?
          • Whose expertise could I enlist to gain a fresh perspective on my present circumstances?

        We all have to go through each of the phases ‚Äď ¬†what matters is that we keep moving forward.

        Breaking out of and escaping your rut

        When you feel stuck in a rut and can't seem to find a solution to your problems, it is interesting to identify why you got the job you have been terminated from in the first place. It's easy to feel worthless, rejected and angry, but we usually find that redundancy is a blessing in disguise.

        Ask yourself, did you apply for the job because it:

        • Suited you? Could you slot it in and around other priorities that needed more of your attention at the time?
        • Was relatively easy and didn't demand too much of your energy?
        • Was the logical next step in your career? Did you even want the job, or did someone else say you should apply for it because you would be crazy not to?
        • Couldn't seem to find the perfect candidate to fill the position? As a consequence, you just absorbed the tasks into your role?

        Whatever the reason, the good news is, with all of the above scenarios, you can evaluate whether you actually need the job you were doing or whether you are ready to embrace another fresh challenge that fits in with your current work/life priorities. Within this article, you'll find plenty of ideas and exercises to help you step out of your comfort zone, get out of the rut you're in, and fulfil your career aspirations.

        Stepping out of your comfort zone

        Stepping out of your comfort zone

        It's more challenging to break out of a rut when you've grown comfortable working in your "comfort zone." The reason for this is that YOU have chosen to stay there. As a result, it necessitates you to make the conscious decision to leave your comfort zone and attempt new things. You may have chosen to remain to do what you are familiar with for a simple life or because you're afraid of failing if you try something new. However, simply reading this indicates that you at least consider how you might improve your situation. So, before you relax back into your usual routine, continue reading and discover the courage to explore what else is possible.

        When you take a chance and embrace new possibilities, there are usually many rewards in store. Stepping out of your comfort zone may lead to new connections, new knowledge, and exposure to different ways of doing things. It also allows you to access your hidden potential and discover talents and abilities that you weren't previously aware of. Furthermore, putting yourself out there can help you build confidence and increase your self-esteem.

        As the old saying goes, "success comes from chasing and embracing opportunities in problems." So, if you're feeling stuck or unhappy with your current situation, take a chance and see where it leads you!

        Never be afraid to think big! If you have a dream or goal, don't let your fear of failure hold you back. Shoot for the stars and see what happens. You may be surprised at the fantastic things that come your way and how much you can achieve when you put your mind to it.

        The Benefits of Adopting a Growth Mindset

        A growth mindset can have a lot of benefits for you and your family. When you approach life and work with a growth mindset, you are more likely to be successful. Here are 5 benefits of having a growth mindset:

        The benefits of adopting a growth mindset

        All of these benefits can help you to live a happier and more productive life.

        Additionally, with the continual progress of technology and change in our world, maintaining what you know best ‚Äď working within your comfort zone ‚Äď will most likely result in you falling behind. This dilemma can be triggered by the fact that every recruiter I know and network with uses an applicant tracking system to filter through the top candidates in a database. They use algorithms embedded within LinkedIn to tap into a hidden job market and slash the time it takes to find a job seeker with Boolean searches and other filters. Further, many of them use Artificial Intelligence to accelerate the recruitment process and job search activities from end to end.

        When it comes to fast-tracking your recruitment process, from submitting an application to signing an employment contract, you need a solid job search strategy.

        Currently, do you find yourself aimlessly scrolling through Seek for jobs? Are you unsure where to start? If you want to succeed, you can't stay on the sidelines with a passive job application plan. That is the quickest way to experience financial hardship. The Perfect Resume team has helped 3.5K+ job seekers, from entry-level to Board level executives, to get their foot in the door with a great resume. Further, suppose you have been made redundant. In that case, we can offer you support and guidance by liaising with your employer to see if they will pay for the service on your behalf, thereby ensuring the entire consultation and learning process is free of charge. Our team of professional resume writers will help you create a document that stands out and showcases your unique skills and experiences. You're just one out of many individuals who want the job you are applying for. If you intend to be the top candidate for the position and surpass everyone actively pushing ahead with their careers, you need a competitive edge. We know the tricks of the trade to ensure you get hired! 

        Embracing personal responsibility and the power of choice

        Let's look at the fantastic advantages of taking personal responsibility for your own development and growth rather than dwelling on the drawbacks of not doing so:

        • Depending on what you know about your own requirements and career aspirations, you may choose how, when, and what topics you want to develop.¬†
        • You can control the speed at which you advance and your job.¬†
        • You can choose whether to accept new responsibilities or roles based on your career path.¬†
        • You have the time available to actively seek out training or workshop opportunities that can help¬†close¬†any shortcomings or specific gaps in your resume.¬†

        When discussing personal development, we're talking about anything from formalised training programs to unstructured learning experiences, such as accepting additional responsibilities you are willing to assume in previous roles. It's essential not to over-exaggerate your experience as recruiters are pretty switched on to knowing when something isn't true; however, you can emphasise certain aspects of your role, take advantage of every experience you have had, and use it to demonstrate your willingness to learn and continually expand your knowledge. 

        How to Stay Positive in the Face of Adversity

        How to stay positive in the face of adversity

        It's difficult to remain upbeat, optimistic, and positive throughout this period; however, there are likely to be certain activities that contribute to a spike in your stress levels, causing you to think negatively. If you feel this way, reach out to one of TPR's Career Coaches. They will be able to provide you with methods to maintain your positive state of mind. For example, one way to stay positive is by focusing on the good aspects of your life, even when things are tough. We can help you make a list of things you're grateful for so you can refer to it when you need an energy boost. We can also help you look at difficult situations from a different perspective. For example, when you have been made redundant, it's easy to avoid thinking about what you did well in your previous job. When you channel your thoughts in this direction, it's easy to get lost in your thoughts and focus on the negative, especially when you're down. To overcome this, we can help you focus on the good aspects of your previous role. If you're having trouble with how to reframe your experiences into achievement-orientated statements, brainstorm with us! Together, let's devise ways to see how your actual work contributed to the organisation's bigger picture.

        How to Focus When Everything is Pulling You in Different Directions

        Whether you're out of work or your end date is looming, you'll need to have a clear vision and genuine aim in mind. Having a clear focus on what job you are targeting next gives your day a real purpose and emotional control over any decisions you need to make. While this period can be painful, it is a one-of-a-kind opportunity to take the time you need to consider what you really want for the future and, more specifically, your long-term career.

        Try not to waste this chance by feeling sorry for yourself or making hasty or wrong judgments because you are upset. Keep your emotions in check and be aware of how you're feeling. If you're down in the dumps, postpone making decisions until you've got a pep in your step again. If you feel overwhelming pressure, we want you to contact us because we are here to take the weight off your shoulders. 

        Thinking outside of the box, creatively, critically, strategically and remaining flexible to alternative options

        Think Outside the Box

        It is critical, as we stated earlier, to keep your mind open and not discourage alternatives prematurely due to a lack of self-confidence. For example, if you were a medical administrative assistant and the clinic that you were working in closed down, it's easy to apply for another medical administrative assistant position. However, why not consider being a Ward Clerk in a hospital? The two roles have transferrable skills; however, unlike the Medical Administration Assistant position, the Ward Clerk role has growth potential. In 2-3 years, you could advance to a Bookings Department Manager and double your salary.

        If you catch yourself saying or thinking, "I'm not good enough for that", recognise that these negative thoughts are likely to be irrational and inaccurate. Give yourself time to gain some clarity. You can evaluate the alternatives rationally and then decide whether you want to pursue some of the ideas you have come up with, but, at the point of brainstorming your options, don't eliminate anything you would really want to apply for. 

        Feelings and emotions ‚Äď should I speak up or stay silent?

        It's really tough to conceal your true feelings and emotions. The people closest to you will frequently be able to detect when you're down, even if you think you're hiding it. Often this is due to us sending out nonverbal communication, including slight body language signals, such as slumping your shoulders or averting your gaze.

        Some people feel that they need to bottle up their emotions in order to deal with them, but this is not always the healthiest solution. It's essential to find someone you can trust to talk to about how you're feeling, whether that's a family member, friend, or therapist. HOWEVER, take extra caution when going on job interviews. Rather than dwelling on the issues in your most recent job, focus on the projects, challenges, or opportunities you obtained that will be of benefit to the next position. Concentrate on why you're the best candidate for the job. Remain upbeat and positive, even if you don't feel like it inside; otherwise, your interviewer will detect a lack of enthusiasm. It's better to be yourself and let the chips fall where they may; showing your true feelings and emotions in an interview will only lead to further unhappiness down the line.

        Why are you the best candidate for the job?

        Take a step back to assess the situation, then evaluate options, set goals, get organised, take action and follow-through

        You are your own best advocate, so be aware of how you speak to yourself when things get tough. Whenever negativity starts creeping in on the path towards progress and success ‚Äď pull yourself back by reminding yourself what good will come from all this hard work! Yes, it can be difficult to keep your head up when things seem to be going wrong, but it's crucial to stay focused on your goals.

        Evaluate the situation and all of your available options, then get organised and take action. Follow through until you reach your goal - and don't forget to celebrate along the way! Don't wait for a signed employment contract to give yourself a pat on your back. Every call-back from potential hiring is a cause for celebration because you have been placed within the Top 10% of applicants, which could be above hundreds of people who applied. Most importantly, if you stay positive and focused on your goals, regularly ask for help, and put in 100% of the effort, all the time, you will get there in the end.

        Set realistic goals and time frames

        Set aside moments when you'll be able to think about your new profession. If required, make slots in your diary specifically for this purpose and keep to them. This may need to happen late at night, during lunch breaks or on the weekend if you're still employed.

        When thinking about your career, try to avoid distractions from others or being side-tracked into doing other things. Make a deliberate effort to remind yourself that this is a time to set aside your unpleasant ideas while working on your career options.

        The top 3 points to focus on when you set realistic goals include:

        1. What are you looking to achieve?
        2. What time frame are you working with?
        3. What resources do you have at your disposal?

          Be sure that all goals and objectives are attainable and measurable. This will help keep you on track while avoiding discouragement if things don't go as planned. Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day!

          Set realistic goals and time frames

          Activity: Meaningful and purposeful goal setting exercise

          There are a variety of factors to think about when establishing a long-term, strategic career path, such as what you enjoy doing, your skills and talents, and the needs of the market. But another important consideration is your financial security. To make sure that you're on track towards a comfortable future, you must take into account a valuable puzzle piece, your income potential and salary trends in your desired field. Salary research can be an essential part of your career planning process, and it can help you make informed decisions about your future. By keeping tabs on what other professionals in your field are earning, you can get a sense of what's possible for you and plan your career accordingly. So if you're looking to ensure that your long-term career prospects are as bright as possible, write down your answers to the following 10 questions:

          Short Term Considerations

          Short term considerations 

          1. What is the minimum wage I need to pay for the cost of living where I am now?
          2. What are the lowest, highest, and average salaries for professionals for my most recent job? (Assuming you like your most recent job. If you are looking to change your career trajectory, it's best to book a consultation with a career counsellor).
          3. What can I do to make myself more marketable?
          4. What job do I need to improve my earning potential in my current field?
          5. What gaps in my experience do I need to close to qualify for a higher salary?
          6. What skills, qualifications, and experiences do I need to earn the highest wage for the role that is a step up from your most recent job? (The answer to this question will help you negotiate a higher salary when you commence a new role.)r salary when you commence a new role.)

           

          Long Term Considerations

          Long term considerations 

          7. At what age would you like to retire?
          8. How much will I need to save for a comfortable retirement?
          9. What investment strategy will I implement to secure a comfortable retirement?
          10. What is the minimum wage l need to ensure I can pay for my expenses, go on holidays, set my retirement up for success, and enjoy living?
          11. What skills, qualifications, and experiences do I need to earn the highest wage for the role and 3 steps up from your most recent job? (The answer to this question will help you identify the types of opportunities you need to put your hand up for to build a solid resume for your future position).
          12. Is the salary for the role above enough to enable me to satisfy my answer to question 1? If not, how many promotions do I need to attain, and what skills, qualifications, and experiences do I need to secure this position?
          13. What other options do I have if I want to increase my income further? This question is a contingency plan in case the market is disrupted by technological advances or economic downturn etc. (e.g. becoming a consultant or starting my own business).
          14. What do I need to do to secure my wealth in case of an unfortunate injury or ill health?
          15. How do I leave a legacy for my children or future children in the event of my passing?

           

          Now, review your answers to questions 1-15 and write down your SMART goals. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound. So, for example, if you want to earn an additional $10,000 in your next role, you might write, "Earn an additional $30,000 in my next role in the next two years by completing a Master's degree."

          Once you have written your SMART goals, it is important to put a plan together on how you will achieve them. Break your goals down into smaller tasks that need to be completed and assign a time frame to each task.

          If you are in your 20s, it could be hard to project plan your career. However, if you plan ahead as much as you can, you can set it aside and start making beneficial decisions for your future.

          How to Maximize Your Personal Influence?

          When times are tough, it's too easy to become unfocused and waste emotional energy on issues you have no control over. Worrying whilst remaining unproductive may result in sleepless nights as well as the loss of valuable time. This small exercise can help you identify what concerns are within your power and, therefore, worth paying attention to. 

          Common worries we tend to have

          Some common worries we tend to have include: 

              • Pitching your resume correctly
              • Lack of personal growth
              • Retirement plans
              • Personal status
              • Credit card debt
              • Fear of failure
              • Family issues
              • Sexuality
              • Religion
              • Loans
              • Tax

          To overcome these worries when you are looking for a new job, you need to start using your time efficiently and worry about issues within your control. To do so, we have the following exercise that will help you sort out the most critical concern to focus on to maximise your time and personal influence. 

          Activity: The Circle of Concern and Influence

          Firstly, take 5 minutes to think about what concerns you have in your life right now. Allow yourself to worry about them all; then, once you feel like you have brainstormed all the issues that are keeping you awake at night, or stopping you from concentrating during the day, take out your notebook. 

          On a blank notebook page or your journal, complete the following steps:

          1. Draw a large circle in the centre of the page, and label the outside of the circle "Circle of Concern".
          2. Within it, draw a second, smaller circle and label it "Circle of Influence".
          3. In the larger circle, off-load all your negative thoughts and worries by writing down all of your issues and concerns.
          4. Analyse your list of issues.
          5. Transfer any concerns from the large circle to the smaller circle that you can take immediate action on.

          You can also complete this exercise using Post-it notes. Once you have listed all your concerns, you can physically move the post-its around into themes. 

          After you have completed the exercise, prioritise 1-3 of the concerns from the Circle of Influence, then list all the steps you need to take under each of the items. In doing so, you now have a priority list of actions to take. Your mind will rest easy knowing that the other worries have been listed; however, it's not time to focus on them just yet. 

          Here is an example: 

           

          Clearing your mind: How to focus on the present

          These are the worries for the particular person in the example above (listed in order of priority): 

          1. How will I pay my bills?
          2. Is my resume up to date?
          3. Why do I keep being overlooked for a promotion?
          4. Do I have the right skills?
          5. I hate the thought of all those interviews
          6. Will I find another job?

          Once the worries have been listed in order of concern, analyse them to see if there are any trends. In the example above,

          • Concerns #2 to #5 are all related to getting a job; therefore, we can merge those together and reframe them as 'How will I secure a full-time job that I enjoy?'.
          • Concern #6 is a negative thought - it doesn't help find clarity or a new job. Therefore, we will omit it from the list.

          Under the remaining two items, the action steps to take have been listed. 

          Clearing your mind: How to focus on the present

             1. How will I pay my bills?

          ¬† ¬†‚ě£¬†Contact Centrelink and request to be set up for benefit payments.
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Identify all outgoings, then make a budget and stick to it.
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Cut back on any unnecessary expenses.
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Sell some belongings that I don't need.
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Get a¬†casual job, such as a pizza shop driver, or¬†become a freelancer on platforms like Fiverr and Airtasker until you¬†secure a full-time position.

             2. How will I secure a full-time job that I enjoy?   

          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Identify my skills and interests to determine what job suits my personality.
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Research the target job on Seek or LinkedIn to see if I have the right skills ‚Äď if I don't, research types of courses I can do or jobs I can apply for that will help me close the gap.¬†
          ¬† ¬†‚ě£ Check if my resume is up to date.¬†
          ‚ě£¬†Request The Perfect Resume team to review my resume for free to ensure it is applicant tracking system compliant and recruiter bias-free.
          ‚ě£¬†Book an interview preparation session with The Perfect Resume so I can feel confident talking about myself at interviews.

          Benefit analysis

          As you have learned by now, there's no sense in wasting time or emotional energy worrying about things you have no control over. After you have categorised your concerns, removed them from your head, and written them down on paper, you will have a much better perspective. You will also have an action-orientated list of tangible steps that you can take and influence how the concerns impact your life. Most importantly, you will have separated the issues that you cannot do anything about from those you can. 

          Answer these 4 questions to gain clarity to avoid worrying next time

          Once you have completed the Circle of Influence activity, ask yourself the following questions:

          • Where am I currently directing most of my energy?
          • Where and how might I better direct my energies?
          • How can I let go of the issues I have determined I have no influence over?
          • What actions will I take to address the issues I can influence?

            Clarifying your priorities to create lasting change

            If you're having trouble prioritising and categorising your worry list from the previous activity, here is an engaging method to identify and graphically represent the things in your life that are important to you. Once you've discovered them, we'll show you how to use them to help you better determine your future goals and objectives, both in general and inside your career. 

            Wheel of Life

            Activity: Let's prioritise ME for a change!

            1. Draw a small circle in the centre of a piece of paper and write "ME" in the circle.
            2. Think about what aspects of your life are most important to you, including:
              Important aspects in life
              3. Divide your circle into equal portions, depending on how many life elements you identified as important to you.
              4. Label each portion of your circle with your life element of choice.
              5. Towards your ME circle, write a short statement describing what your CURRENT situation looks like.
              6. Towards the outer edge of the circle, write what your IDEAL situation looks like.

                After you complete this activity, see if any of the worries you listed in the previous activity fit into any of these segments. If you don't, or they don't help you transition from your current situation to your ideal situation, you can write the worry down on a piece of paper, scrunch it up, and aim for the bin!

                Reflection: Answer these 4 questions to gain clarity

                After putting yourself in the centre of your world and not your family, friends, partner, boss, children, etc., you will start to see where you need to take action to improve your life. Once you have completed the activity above, ask yourself the following questions:

                • What activities can provide me with the most pleasure and fulfilment in my life?
                • Which priority is most essential to me?
                • What are my favourite hobbies and activities?
                • How do I want to use my time and energy?
                • What will motivate me to use my time and energy most efficiently?

                  Defining your purpose in life then making your dreams a reality!

                  Defining your purpose in life then making your dreams a reality

                  We'll get back to the present and the crucial topic of finding your next position, but it's also beneficial during this early phase to allow yourself time and space to consider your long-term ambitions or goals.

                  As you look into the outer circle on each of the main components in your diagram, try to push yourself as far ahead in time as you can and answer the following questions about your future goals:

                  • What are your hopes and dreams for the future?
                  • What kind of life do you want to live?
                  • What would I ideally like this life element to be like 5-10 years from now?¬†
                  • How do I want to be directing my energies in the future?¬†
                  • What must I have achieved by then?¬†

                  This isn't about setting specific targets or making hard-and-fast resolutions but simply getting a sense of the kind of things that inspire and motivate you.

                  In terms of your career, what would you like to:

                  • Achieve?
                  • Start working on?
                  • Stop doing?

                    When it comes to your personal life, what are the things you would most like to:

                    • Experience?
                    • Learn?
                    • Improve?

                    Again, this is about getting a clear sense of your aspirations and motivations so that you can better align them with

                    Remember, at this time, to avoid writing down any of your goals as "impossible" or "unrealistic." In later articles, you will have the opportunity to assess the reality of your concepts.

                    The importance of reflection and taking a step back

                    The importance of reflection and taking a step back

                    Whatever your motivation for looking for a new job, you'll almost certainly hit a period where you can't turn off your thoughts about your current situation. As a result, you could lose sight of the forest for the trees. Occasionally, it's useful to take a step back and check your thinking by putting yourself in someone else's shoes.

                    If you need help considering a problem from another viewpoint, try the following activities:

                    • Write down the pros and cons of your current situation from your perspective.
                    • Underneath what you have written above, re-write them from someone else's perspective. Imagine your friend, colleague, mum, sister, etc., sitting down where you are now and then jot down what they would write.
                    • Ask a friend to share their thoughts on your strengths and weaknesses.
                    • Ask a colleague or mentor, someone you trust, what they believe is your biggest opportunity or challenge?

                    Lean on others to find out what's holding you back

                    You may be inclined to involve others in your thoughts, whether you are someone who likes to think out loud or not. If you are more on the introverted side, we strongly advise having a chat through your issues with family, friends, coworkers, or a career counsellor (find a career counsellor here). At the end of the day, you are not obligated to accept any of their viewpoints or ideas; however, they might at least offer you different perspectives.

                    Consider the people you respect for their judgment and decision-making. If you inquired them about your thoughts, this would be excellent. If not, consider how you believe they would respond to your ideas and conclusions.

                    Take a break to improve your mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health

                    Take a break to improve your mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health

                    Take a pause if you're becoming confused or weary of thinking things through. A quick drink or something to eat may be enough to get you back on track. You may need to take a few-day vacation from your regular life to completely clear your head and return with fresh eyes once you've had enough time away. After all, when you're working, you generally have some free time to unwind on your days off.

                    If you're having trouble dealing with a shift in your personal, professional, or other life circumstances, your organisation may have employee assistance programs you can utilise. Alternatively, The Perfect Resume team has inspired over 3,500+ people to succeed in their career aspirations each year, including helping redundant employees gather the strength they need to move forward after such an emotional period. We can listen to your issues, help you reframe your ideas, create practical solutions and ensure that you have the resources and tools required to move forward, accept change, and reach for your goals. We want to help you succeed, and we're here for you every step of the way.

                    In difficult times it's especially important to remember that you are not alone. Turn to other departing employees to see how they are handling the situation, your friends, family, and The Perfect Resume community for support. We'll be here when you're ready to take the next step.

                    The Perfect Resume Career Counseling Session

                    If you would like to chat with a career coach in a 60-minute 1:1 consultation, please click on the link below to book a career counselling session. We are here for you.