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Change in the Workplace: Layoffs

Company layoffs and downsizing can be hard on those who are still working, as well as those who are let go.

Coping with layoffs

If you’ve been laid off:

Remember that you’re a victim of the economy, not a bad employee.

  • Prioritize your bills and find out if you can get unemployment insurance.

  • Identify what you do well and what you like to do.

  • Decide if you want a similar job or if it’s time for a career change. Talking with an employment counselor or a union representative may help you decide.

  • Contact your state department of labor for information on job placement resources.

If you’re still working:

You may be worried about your own job security. You may feel guilty for still  having a job. You’re also probably faced with more work.

  • Give the new situation some time. Then decide if it suits you or if you want to make your own changes.

  • Review your finances. See if you have enough savings to meet your expenses for a few months in case you are laid off in the future.


Group of happy people in boat, moving forward.

Staying positive

If you keep a healthy outlook, coping with change can be easier.

  • Give yourself credit for all that you do right.

  • Talk with people who will give you honest feedback and encouragement.

  • Take care of yourself. Exercise, eat well, get enough sleep, and avoid alcohol and drugs.

  • Get help if you’re stuck. Talk with your EAP (employee assistance program) or human resources representative. Or look online for workshops on managing stress and change.


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