Great Resumes Fast » Career » When Your Job Hands You Lemons, Make Lemonade

You’ve heard it. And when it comes to your job search, you’re likely sick of hearing that horrible, chirpy cliché: “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade!” Right. You probably feel more like squeezing out the lemon juice, throwing it in the eyes of the last potential employer who rejected you, and adding a handful of salt for good measure.

Okay, pull back and regroup! Let’s talk about Patty (not her real name). She graduated from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business in May of 2012. She landed a job with a top firm, and loved her job. The problem was that only six months into her position, her boss told her, essentially, “Too bad, so sad, cutbacks, g’bye.” She hadn’t seen it coming, and in March of 2013, Patty was out of work.

Talk about getting lemons tossed your way. So, what did Patty do? She used the contacts she already had. She got in touch with Darden Alumni Career Services, and took some time to think about what she really wanted to do with her career. She could have jumped to another similar firm, but instead, she decided to make a complete career change. She identified clear objectives, and asked colleagues for help. Those colleagues listened, and put her in touch with a number of companies that could offer her the type of job she wanted. In less than a month, she had interviews with three companies.

A layoff does not have to be the end of the world. Patty realized that the downsizing had nothing to do with her or her abilities, and she used her contacts and strengths to find other paths that would help her achieve her career goals.

Of course, if you’ve been laid off, you’ll feel that you’ve experienced a loss. You’ll need time to recover and regroup, but it’s important to remain positive. Use your contacts. But don’t call them immediately following the layoff; you don’t want to come off as desperate and whiny. Take the time off to prepare yourself for a new situation, and keep your objectives clearly in mind. A layoff isn’t necessarily a bad thing; sometimes it’s just a little bump on the road to an even better career. So kick back, pour yourself a glass of lemonade, and get ready to move on.

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About the author

Jessica Hernandez, President, CEO & Founder of Great Resumes Fast

Hi, I’m Jessica. I started this company back in 2008 after more than a decade directing hiring practices at Fortune 500 companies.

What started as a side hustle (before that was even a word!) helping friends of friends with their resumes has now grown into a company that serves hundreds of happy clients a year. But the personal touch? I’ve kept that.

You might have seen me featured as a resume expert in publications like Forbes, Fast Company, and Fortune. And in 2020, I was honored to be named as a LinkedIn Top Voice of the year!

I’m so glad you’re here, and I can’t wait to help you find your next perfect-fit position!

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