I have a family and that the thought of getting layoff used to scare me every time I would think about. Well, it happened to me at some time not long ago and it was not end of the world and I realized what keep me afloat were two things
- Keep your skills current
- Do not burn any bridges
Those two things are so powerful when looking for a new career and I think they complement very well each other. I was in a company that I was the go to guy for almost everything, I knew enough about networking to get into trouble, I was able to translate business requirements into IT requirements very well, I have a pretty good grasp on Hyper-V and VMware and understood Windows server technologies pretty well. I forgot to mention the company was small enough that I sometimes was racking and cabling servers . I love what I did because I was learning something new almost everyday.
With my experience and being one of the few people in the company to understand the company’s Infrastructure and Operations pretty well you would have think I was untouchable. Couple of mergers later and new management it happened, I got layoff. There were two main reasons the new management wanted to take the company in a different direction and i did not agree with some management decisions.
When my old boss from a different company found out that I got lay off he lend me at hand and gave me job while I find another job. This was a great because i was able to pay bills but at the same time I had more time for myself and used it to get some certifications and catch up on cloud technologies. I went ahead and rebuilt my lab at home although I moved most of the virtual machines to Microsoft Azure. I tried to pursue the PMP certification took the classes and the test twice but failed. I guess I could have invest more time studying but I got busy with other projects and forgot about it or wanted to forget about it.
After some period of time I found good job in IT with a great company and I am still learning something new everyday. My advise to you is to keep your resume and Linkedin up to date all the time because you never know when you would be next. Make sure are trying new technologies, it does not matter if your employer does not want you to try anything new, they are not responsible for paying your bills you are. Go and build a lab and take time outside to work to learn new technologies. Of course, make time for yourself and family but believe me you can find time to learn new things instead of watching TV or playing games in your phone for 2 hours.