The memo released by Ford on May 20th, 2019, made it the latest automobile company to announce a slash in their workforce. This move will render 7000 people unemployed by the end of August 2019. This figure represents 10% of Ford’s global workforce. 800 of this layoff will affect U.S. citizens.
Although Ford announced their plans for a redesign in salaried jobs back in October 2018, it’s still uncertain what the future holds for both the company and the affected staff.
This restructuring is expected to save about $600 million dollars annually in salaries.
Speculation is that this is Ford’s way of getting ready for the disruption that is coming to the auto industry.
Preparation for the Future
So many Auto giants have been on the brink as a result of the sharp drift in customer preference. With emission restrictions getting stiffer in major markets like China, Europe, and even the United States, sales have plummeted. It’s not going to get any better as more demand for electric vehicles increases.
As disturbing as it is, this is an interesting development.
It’s disturbing in the sense that by August 2019, a cumulative 28,500 people would have lost their jobs due to this industry shakeup. This takes account of the layoffs by General Motors (14,000), Jaguar Land Rover (4,500), Tesla (3,000), and most recently Ford (7,000).
This is too much of a number to lose their jobs in the space of nine months from one industry. It is quite disturbing.
The interesting thing here is that people are losing their jobs to give way for improvement in the industry. The Auto Market is preparing for the proliferation of electric and self-driven cars. No company wants to be left behind. Trust me, the cost of investing in this technology is the major driver of the layoffs going on.
As we prepare for the future of the Automobile Industry (which is already here), there’s still the small problem of dealing with the increasing rate of unemployment.
How Do Affected Employees Deal with this Disruption?
No matter the reason, getting laid off has a big toll on an individual. It’s bad that you don’t have a job. But being out of a job is worse.
Even with Ford giving a long rope to its affected staff, it’s still going to be a difficult moment for them.
Truth is, there are tons of people that get laid off a job on a daily basis. According to available statistics, over 3 million people have been displaced from their jobs between 2015 and 2018. This is in the United States alone. Sadly, 34% of them don’t get reemployed.
For statisticians, this might be a small fraction in comparison to the 66% that get reemployed. But frankly, 34% of 3 million is not a number to ignore.
Whether you’re among the 34% or you’re one of the 28,500, here are strategies to help you deal with a lay-off.
1. Come to Terms with the Reality
Whenever a lay-off happens, affected people fall into two categories.
One category is the people that didn’t see the lay-off coming. They just came to work on a regular Monday only to be slapped with a lay-off notice.
The other category is the ones that knew that a lay-off was imminent, but didn’t think they would be affected. They see themselves as too valuable to the company to be cut loose.
Whichever the category you find yourself, you need to come to terms with it.
What’s the reality here?
It’s simple: You’re being laid off and not fired.
Yes, it has nothing to do with your ineptitude. You’re just a victim of a company’s survival gimmicks.
This helps you manage the pain and despair that’s usually associated with lay-offs. It gives you the strength to move forward.
The great philosopher, Lao Tzu said that resisting natural and spontaneous changes only leads to sorrow. Trust me, you don’t want to lose your mind. You need to let reality be reality if you must move forward.
2. See it From a Positive Perspective
What if I told you that being laid off could be a good thing?
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a pretty place to be. But, I’ve seen some good come out of lay-offs.
As a matter of fact, most business owners today had to lose their jobs at some point. The reason they are successful today was because of a shift in perspective.
Louis-Kennedy Chukwuka, CEO of Clients Oasis, recounts how most of the business owners he has helped went through this same phase in their lives. He encouraged them not to get swallowed up in their predicament. They took the initiative, looked beyond their predicament, and took a bold walk into the business world. “We had to take our time to work on their mindset to make them see great possibilities,” says Chukwuka.
It’s possible you were in the wrong job all this time. This is not about how much money you made working there. It’s about doing something you really love. Something that will make a global impact.
Seeing a lay-off from a positive perspective is a great way to deal with it.
3. Leverage Your Network
Building a credible network is the best thing you can do for yourself. Whether you just started out working or you’ve worked for a while. You need a network to connect you to numerous opportunities.
The network you need could be your company’s network or personal network.
Don’t get so carried away with the layoff process that you forget to ask for a referral. This will help you as you search for another job or you float your own business.
You need to take advantage of the network you have to move forward. Talk to your friends, colleagues, people you knew while at your previous employment. There has to be someone in your network that can help you get a fresh start.
Forward is The Only Way…
This is not the first time we have seen industry shakeups send people back to the labor market. It happens every now and again. There’s bound to be more of the same in the coming years.
If you’re in any way affected by this, you can get through it by applying the strategies I mentioned above.
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