Book Review - Rebound: A Proven Plan for Starting Over After Job Loss by Martha I. Finney
Now here's a timely book for our current economic mess... Rebound: A Proven Plan for Starting Over After Job Loss by Martha I. Finney. I got this book by request from Amazon Vine, as I know far too many people who have had to go through the "we're sorry, but you've been laid off" turmoil. I also still remember my (fortunately) one time of unemployment at the start of the dot.com bust. I would have done *much* better had I seen this book before those fateful words...
Part 1 - The Inner Game of Getting Laid Off: What to Expect When You're No Longer Expected; New Career Realities and New Career Rules; You're Still in Control
Part 2 - Preparing for a Layoff: Are You on the Layoff List?; Financial - What to Do Before You Get Laid Off; Set the Tone for How You Leave; Plan Your Exit
Part 3 - Know Your Rights: What You Can Expect from a Severance Package; Stop! Just Say No; Ask for Special Treatment; A Word About Noncompete Agreements; Not That It Matters to You, but It Hurts for Them, Too
Part 4 - When You've Been Laid Off: Financial - Control Your Spending; What Do I Do with All This Rage?; The Kids Can Handle the Truth; Good Things to Remember
Part 5 - Landing Your Next Job: The Importance of Having a Plan; Learn to Love Networking; Using Social Networking for Your Job Search; Build Your "A" Player Status Even Though You Are Not Employed; Talking About Your Job Loss in Interviews; How to Evaluate the Job You've Been Offered; Should You Take a Job with a Company That's Laying People Off?; Go! Just Say Yes; Start Your New Job with Confidence; Never Be in This Situation Again
Part 6 - Appendixes: Step Away from the Fridge! Reach for This Instead; Greg and Martha's List of Automatic No's
Resources and Suggested Reading
Finney doesn't try to make job loss a minor thing or paint it as all sunshine and roses. It hurts, period. She acknowledges that in the very first chapter, along with the fact that having a job because you show up and do what's expected doesn't mean anything in today's job market. Even critical "A" players are being shown the door, but it's important to know and understand that ultimately you're in control of what you do. Part 2 of the book is best read and digested *before* you get the phone call from HR, as it deals with what you should be doing while you still have a job, as well as how best to make your physical exit with grace and dignity. It's tempting to want to give in to your emotions (be they tears or rage), but remember that quite often you end up working with the same people over and over. Don't burn your bridges...
Parts 3, 4, and 5 are where you're going to be living after you've walked out (or been walked out) the door. She gives you the information you need to get the most out of your severance agreement (and how you might even be able to accommodate special situations). Living on a reduced income, working your network, and getting ready for that next interview follow, with (in my opinion) the right mix of compassion, humor, and reality. The tone is more like a good friend helping you stay focused instead of a dry, formulaic method that "guarantees" you'll get a job. I also enjoyed the "best thing to do"/"worst thing to do"/"first thing to do" summaries at the end of each chapter.
Because a fair amount of this material deals with things you should know *before* the "resource action", it would be beneficial to read it now (assuming you're still employed) so that you don't make emotional mistakes. Or at least you'll know what they are when you make them. It's a fast read, and one that will make a difference if/when you need it.