There are many reasons why a company would let an employee go. While they might seem understandable on paper, it is never easy for the person who was let go to deal with the loss and the rejection that comes with this development.

Moving Forward Requires Looking Back

You might have fallen victim to necessary budget cuts or may have been considered redundant due to a merger. You might have lost your place in the company due to insubordination or because you broke a critical rule. No matter what their reason was for letting you go, you will find the next few weeks or months emotionally trying. However, this will only define you if you allow it to. The first step is essential to take accountability.

No, I am not asking you to dwell in the past. I am simply asking you to review the cause and see if there would have been a way to stay with the company. Often, newly fired people will direct all blame to the organization that gave them the boot. Doing so is not productive, and it will not reflect well on you when interviewing.

Analyze what you could have done to prevent this from happening. Analysis is part of the learning curve, but only if you choose to learn from the situation.  Taking ownership is the smartest way to go.

Ask For Letters of Recommendation

Leave with grace and dignity. I tell people to move on in a civil manner. Your old employers have become part of your network and will be useful in the future, whether for pre-employment recommendations or job leads.

Unless you have burned all bridges, ask for a letter of recommendation from influential people within the former organization. These documents will come in handy for the next job interview.

Don’t Wallow in Self-Pity

A self-pity party might seem like a good idea at first. Sure, take a few days to lick your wounds, as that is a healthy way to process and accept this new development. Anything past a few days will send your self-esteem into a downward spiral. If you stay in this mindset for too long, you may need professional help to get past the sense of anger and hopelessness that you feel.  Self-pity will make you second-guess your worth, which is something you should avoid if you are interviewing for a new job.

Don’t Wait Until the Severance Check Runs Out

Many people make the mistake of coasting through for a few months while being entirely dependent on their severance checks. The smart thing to do would be to take no more than two weeks to process what happened and start hunting for a job again.

In the animal science industry, the hiring process can take some time, as companies also have day-to-day tasks to process. It can take seven days to six months to get hired. Don’t coast.

Being let go is not easy. However, it is not a reason to feel discouraged either. If you need someone who can help you get your career back on track, you can reach me at or at 302-257-2008.