In my work as a recruiter I meet every week with a wide variety of individuals, many of whom have been restructured from their former positions. Margins are tight, companies are looking for every way to improve productivity and profitability, thus restructuring takes place and results in some or many positions being reduced or redesigned. So… if you have been restructured what are your next steps?
First and foremost it’s important to recognize you’re not alone. Not a day goes by where I don’t see outstanding resumes of people who have made great contributions and are now looking for their next career step. It does not carry the stigma that it once did, and the vast majority of employers do not look at a person who’s been restructured as someone they should be careful about hiring. In fact, enlightened employers often look at it quite differently and see it as an opportunity to add experienced, excellent talent to their organizations as they move forward.
Secondly, it is critical to accept the facts of a restructure and get prepared to move on. If you’re offered some kind of career counseling absolutely accept it and use it wisely. In many cases people who are restructured haven’t prepared a resume, networked effectively or interviewed for a position for many years. Using professional help in these areas is a great idea. It’s healthy to “talk it through”, process what has happened and prepare for the transitional phase.
Thirdly, remember a key to securing your next position will be developing a professional resume. It’s imperative to understand you are competing in the job marketplace and your resume will be viewed against dozens and perhaps hundreds of others. Frankly the resume is the opening statement to a potential conversation and a lack of attention at this point can be very costly. The good news is professional resume writers are reasonable in cost and easily found.
Finally, many restructuring situations include some form of severance pay or salary continuance. In some cases if the years of service are significant this can be quite lengthy and may prompt the thought that says there’s lots of time to find the next opportunity. My advice is, get busy with searching for your next position. In many cases it takes longer than people think to be reemployed and the stress that builds is a distraction and very counterproductive.
So remember, if you find yourself in a difficult spot of having been restructured there is light at the end of the tunnel. It’s imperative that you understand the transitional phase and all that goes with it is actually your new job until you are reemployed. Get all the support you can, read every positive article available, focus clearly on your strengths and how you can help the next employer by bringing all of your experience and ability to a new position.
Ross Reimer is President of Reimer Associates Inc.