Leave on Good Terms After Being Laid Off

Losing your job can be incredibly painful, but it’s in your best interest to handle the difficult situation as gracefully as possible. So do your best to keep negative emotions in check. You want your colleagues to remember your generosity and integrity, so they can be your advocates and support network as you figure out what’s next. Identify the people whom you want to tell directly — mentors, former bosses, friends, clients — and thank them for their support. Sharing the news personally demonstrates how much you value the relationship. Next, develop a plan with your boss to pass along your work, knowledge, and relationships to other colleagues — who will likely remember that you set them up for success. Finally, write a short goodbye note to your team emphasizing what you’re proud of and grateful for. Keep it brief and share your contact information. While it may be hard to mask your frustration, ultimately, your goal is to make the most of this challenging situation to ensure you’ll have a cohort of allies who will be happy to support and advocate for you as you navigate your next steps.


This tip is adapted from “You’re Not Powerless in the Face of a Layoff,” by David Lancefield and Dorie Clark

Categories: Management and Career Tips

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