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8 Awesome Ideas to Bounce Back After a Layoff, Straight from the Pros!

how to bounce back from a layoff
Career Tips / General / Motivation

8 Awesome Ideas to Bounce Back After a Layoff, Straight from the Pros!

Whoa, being laid off can be a major bummer, right? It’s not just about losing your income and routine – it can also take a toll on your mental health and self-esteem. But listen up, friend!

While your first instinct might be to fire off a bunch of job applications, it’s important to take a step back and prioritize your well-being. That’s right, your mental health matters!

According to, a whopping 120,342 employees have been laid off from tech companies since the start of the year.

Yikes, that’s a lot! And if things keep going at this rate, we could be looking at over 900,000 jobs cut in 2023. But don’t panic just yet, because we’re here to help you navigate through this crazy time. Here’s how to bounce back from a layoff, from our expert career coaches.

Sometimes layoffs happen for reasons completely out of our control. Maybe the company’s budget got mismanaged, or they overestimated demand. It could even be because of a merger or industry competition.

But here’s the thing – it’s usually not because of your performance. In fact, 40% of Americans have been laid off at least once, and 28% in just the past two years alone, according to Zippia. So hey, you’re definitely not alone!

How To Bounce Back From A Layoff: 8 Things To Do According To Career Experts

Now, we know it might be tough to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but here’s some good news: Big Tech isn’t going anywhere.

Sure, there have been some recent layoffs, but it barely made a dent in the hiring frenzy that happened before it. Plus, the net headcount at FAANGs (that’s Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google) is still higher than pre-COVID levels. So don’t lose hope just yet – we’ll get through this together!

Document your accomplishments

First things first, take a deep breath and give yourself a pat on the back. You’ve accomplished a lot in your last job, and now it’s time to showcase all of your hard work.

Before you dive headfirst into a job search, take some time to reflect and reevaluate your career path.

Start by making a list of all the cool stuff you did in your last role. Did you lead any projects or initiatives that made a difference? Did you mentor any coworkers or come up with creative solutions to problems?

Don’t be afraid to brag a little – this is your chance to showcase your talents and accomplishments.

Once you’ve got your list, use it to help you figure out what type of job you’re looking for next. Think about what you loved and what you didn’t love about your previous role, and use that to guide your search.

Maybe you’re looking for more growth opportunities, or maybe you want to switch careers entirely. The possibilities are endless!

And don’t forget to take some time for yourself. Being laid off can be tough, but it can also be an opportunity to learn new skills or try something different. Consider freelancing or upskilling to broaden your horizons and build your portfolio. The sky’s the limit!

Remember you are in tech. That’s a strong, in-demand skillset

Don’t let the recent layoffs in Big Tech get you down. While it’s natural to feel a little shaken up after losing your job, remember that you have a unique and in-demand skillset that’s highly sought after by companies across every industry.

From data analytics to AI, programming to cloud engineering, and cybersecurity to machine learning, your digital skills are still in high demand.

Despite the recent layoffs, the tech job market is still growing and expected to continue doing so in 2023, albeit at a more conservative rate than last year. So, chin up and start exploring your options!

If you’re thinking about switching careers, now could be the perfect time to do so. Many “traditional” companies, from finance and insurance to retail and healthcare, are actively seeking tech talent to help them modernize their business processes, optimize the user experience, collect data-driven insights, and more.

Plus, with the green-tech sector seeing increased government funding, there are even more opportunities for tech workers to make a difference and build climate change solutions.

So, don’t limit yourself to Big Tech companies. Expand your horizons and start exploring mid-size companies that are more open to new talent and competing with the big guns for the best and brightest.

Who knows, you might just find your dream job and end up making a real difference in the world.

And if you’re feeling a little lost and unsure of what your next move should be, take a deep breath and remember that this could be a prime opportunity to reevaluate your career path, reassess your values, or even switch careers entirely.

Take inventory of your accomplishments, think about what you liked and disliked about your previous role, and use those insights to frame the type of role you’re looking for.

Develop a routine job search routine

Creating a routine during a job search can be a game-changer. It gives structure to your day, helps you stay focused, and keeps you motivated. Plus, you’ll be less likely to get lost in a sea of Netflix binges and potato chips.

To create a routine, start by setting achievable goals for each day of the week. Maybe Monday is your day for networking and reaching out to people in your industry. Tuesday could be dedicated to polishing your resume and cover letter.

Wednesday might be for researching companies you’re interested in and finding job openings.

Try to schedule your most important tasks for the time of day when you’re most productive. If you’re a morning person, tackle the toughest tasks early in the day. If you’re more of a night owl, save the heavy lifting for later in the day.

Don’t forget to take breaks throughout the day to stretch, go for a walk, or grab a snack. It’s important to take care of yourself during a job search, both physically and mentally.

And lastly, celebrate your wins, no matter how small they may be. Did you land an informational interview? Did you update your LinkedIn profile? Did you apply to a job you’re excited about? Congratulate yourself and keep pushing forward.

Utilize your network

Did you know that a whopping 85% of jobs are filled through networking? That means it’s time to put those social skills to work.

Start by letting everyone in your immediate circle know that you’re on the hunt for a new gig. That means reaching out to friends, family, former coworkers, and anyone else who can vouch for your work ethic and skills.

Pro-tip: it’s much easier to ask for a referral from someone you know than to send out a cold email.

Next, hop on LinkedIn and start searching for people who work in the companies or industries you’re interested in. Shoot them a message expressing interest in their work or a recent project they posted about, and ask if they’d be willing to chat more about their role.

But wait, there’s more! Don’t limit yourself to the online world. Attend industry events and use networking platforms like Lunchclub to meet professionals in your field. And at the end of every meeting, be sure to ask if there’s anyone else you should reach out to.

But before you start schmoozing, make sure you’re ready to impress. Have your elevator pitch ready, be able to talk about your portfolio on the spot, and get in front of as many people as possible.

And remember: never let a week go by without connecting with someone new or joining an industry group. Now get out there and make those connections!

Upskill or reskill, you’ll gain more

It’s a wild world out there, and the job market is changing faster than a chameleon changes color.

It’s not just those who are currently unemployed who need to think about reskilling and upskilling – even those who are already working in the tech industry need to stay ahead of the curve.

In fact, a report by PwC found that a whopping 79% of global CEOs are sweating bullets about finding the right digital talent.

And it’s not just CEOs who are worried – employers are realizing that the skills needed to succeed in today’s job market are constantly evolving. A recent study by LinkedIn found that the skills needed for an average job have changed by a staggering 25% since 2015. That’s a lot of new skills to learn!

But don’t fret – we’ve seen some amazing success stories of people making the jump to new careers. We’re talking EMTs who became software engineers, Chinese translators who became data scientists, and even TV production coordinators who became data analysts.

And if that’s not enough to inspire you, we’ve even seen school administrators who became UX designers. The possibilities are endless!

Do some surgery on your portfolio

This is one solid advice on how to bounce back from a layoff. Keeping an updated portfolio is an essential part of being a successful tech professional.

It’s the first thing that potential employers will look at when considering you for a job, so it’s important to ensure that your portfolio is both impressive and up to date. But how can you make sure your portfolio stands out?

Firstly, it’s important to showcase projects from your previous roles that are worth highlighting. Whether you worked on a project that had significant impact or you learned a new skill, make sure you highlight it in your portfolio.

Additionally, if you’ve been unemployed for a while, you should demonstrate to employers how you used that time to improve your skills. For example, you could show how you’ve contributed to open-source projects, joined hackathons, or volunteered at non-profits.

If you’re looking for ways to improve your portfolio even further, consider working on personal projects based on topics of interest or skills you’d like to learn.

This is a great way to not only show off your skills but also to demonstrate your passion for the field. For example, if you’re interested in data analysis, you could find publicly available datasets and analyze them to show your skills.

Or, if you’re interested in UX design, you could prototype an app and create a case study to walk hiring managers through your thought process.

Another way to work on portfolio-ready projects is to join a bootcamp or enroll in a degree program.

Practice your interviewing skills

Interviewing can be a nerve-wracking experience, but with consistent practice, it can become a distinct skill that sets you apart from other job candidates. If you’ve been laid off from a previous job, don’t let it hold you back during an interview.

Be upfront and authentic when discussing the situation, but also try to find something positive to highlight. For example, you could talk about how you were able to spend more time with your family while teaching yourself new skills related to your field.

To prepare for an interview, it’s important to have your pitch ready and to be prepared to walk someone through your projects. This will show that you’re knowledgeable and passionate about your work.

Additionally, it’s a good idea to get yourself in front of as many people in the industry as possible. This could mean attending networking events or even reaching out to professionals on LinkedIn.

To further prepare for an interview, it’s important to practice answering behavioral and technical interview questions.

For scenario-based questions about your prior work experience, try using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Response) format to structure your answers. This will help you provide a clear and concise response that highlights your abilities and experience.

For data science and software engineering jobs, there are also online platforms available to help you practice for interviews.

Pramp, for example, allows users to practice live interviews with peers on topics like data structures, algorithms, product management, system design, front-end development, and data science.

Another platform to consider is, which connects users with professional interviewers and mentors from big tech companies.Top of Form

Keep hope alive, it will soon happen

Job hunting can be a rollercoaster of emotions, especially if you’re not seeing results right away. It’s important to find ways to cope with the uncertainty and take care of your mental health during this time.

Make sure to take regular breaks and treat each interview as a valuable learning experience, no matter what the outcome is. And don’t forget to ask for feedback! Understanding where you can improve will help you land your dream job in the long run.

Remember, there’s no need to compare your job search process to others’. This will only make you feel insecure and less motivated.

Stay focused on your goals and keep pushing forward, even if it takes longer than you hoped to land that perfect job. Trust the process and have faith in your abilities as a professional.

And following these experts generated steps, you are on your best chance on learning how to bounce back from a layoff.

Ready to upskill or join tech?

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If you’re interested in learning more about any of these fields, we can help you get started on the path to a successful career in tech.

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Whether you’re just starting out in tech or looking to take your skills to the next level, PlumlogixU can help you achieve your goals.