Mad men-without-jobsNovember 16, 2009Jon Brooks 1 Comment »
The blog features a useful section on companies that are hiring, and a column specifically for those in account services. But the highlight is the first-person accounts and reactions by those in the industry (or formerly in the industry) who’ve been let go. Here are a couple of good ones:
Don’t Fear the Reaper – Brad Mislow
The thought of losing my job used to freak me out. It was, in my head, the boogeyman of the office – hiding amongst the cubicles. Wearing a bloodstained hockey mask. Cutting short the careers of budding creative directors. It was merciless…It doesn’t want to hear your story about your family and your mortgage and your bills. It wants you gone. It wants your security pass and your office keys. It wants to laugh maniacally in your empty office as it dances on your desk, banging at your laptop, stealing your downloaded music and deleting your files…
Then it happened to me. And it wasn’t so bad. (My boss) told me the news as gentle as he could. He shook my hand and told me it was a pleasure working with me. I told him likewise. He told me to see some HR people. I saw those HR people, sadly hugged my partner goodbye and went along my way. No blood. No gore. No echoing cackle of doom.
Throughout it all, I realized something. I’m an adult. I may be a boyish-man in a childlike business where 38-year-olds dress (and sometimes act) like teenagers, but underneath my Threadless t-shirt and faded jeans is a responsible human being. We ad people are not helpless teen counselors at Camp Killgore running through the woods to escape a homicidal manic. We’re professionals, and we must act that way. We deal with rejection and failure like adults. We call our support team of…anyone who can help us get back on our feet…It’s not an easy process. There’s probably some drama. But a horror film it’s not.
So, yes, I lost my job. But hey, I had a good streak. Ten years of consistent employment. I survived so many rounds of layoffs I stopped counting. I was overdue. And now, it begins again. I’ll get a new job. I’ll settle into a new routine. And as long as I’m in this business, chances are I’ll most likely get laid off again. And if so, so what? It’s nothing to be afraid of.
The Five Biggest Surprises About Getting Laid Off – Jeanne Schad
1. Talent doesn’t matter.
So you put in fifteen-hour days for a pitch. So you’ve never had a bad review. So the clients love you. That’s…ikely not anything that could have saved your job. Most often, layoffs are made based on a salary level, title or position and everybody meeting those criteria, regardless of their talent or hard work, are cut…
2. Your boss might not have been able to save you.
You may have a great relationship with your immediate supervisor who made a great case for you. Sometimes it doesn’t matter and the decision to cut you was made at a much higher level…
3. Your alliances at work might not carry over past your employment.
This is especially true when you’re friends with survivors – people who didn’t make the last cut but fear they’ll be next. You might call them for sympathy and find they may not be very willing to kvetch with you. Recognize that the primal instinct to survive may have kicked in and social niceties may get set aside…Don’t be surprised if they’re not as willing to share your company-bashing.
4. This industry might not fit you anymore.
Advertising is a relatively young profession and as we age, our priorities change. What excited you about the business (trips to LA, nights out to expensive restaurants, late hours on really cool projects) may be the things you hate most now. With new priorities, it’s fair to re-evaluate whether the industry fits the lifestyle we want…Now that you’re a free agent, what possibilities open up?
5. You’re going to be okay.
It might be hard to see but it’s important to know you will survive. More people than not in the great advertising jobs have been laid off. It’s a cyclical business and soon somebody somewhere is going to need your talents. Go enjoy yourself in the meantime, do things you might not have tried and expand yourself…