Isn’t there some sort of etiquette to layoffs?


So, this past week got kinda sucky. Monday, I had 6.5 hours solid of meetings at work and the majority included my boss, who was really crabby and unpleasant to be around. I was personally also pretty crabby because Brandon had yet another fever and I had finally reached my limit with the constant illness in our little family over the past two months. The bottom line was that my boss and I were definitely butting heads a bit and because Monday was crappy, my attitude Tuesday was pretty cynical and it didn’t get much better when my one on one was delayed for an hour. Of course, at 11am I found out why it was delayed - my boss had been composing a letter to lay me off.

I won’t lie - I cried a little. Now I wish I hadn’t. He sat in my office telling me that it had nothing to do with performance (I believe that) and that he would like me to possibly come back in the future (I believe that as well). So, I was told I could work out the rest of the week, which I don’t think is necessarily common for layoffs, but I know my boss trusts me.

The thing that really stumped me was that after he laid me off, I got zero direction as to what to do the rest of the week. I probably had less than 20 minutes of conversation with him the entire week, including when he laid me off. I felt like the red-headed step-child and it was excruciatingly awkward. I felt like telling him that he needed to get a grip and that the situation was his doing, not mine.

After the first couple of days, I just figured it wasn’t worth getting upset over. The situation is what it is and there is absolutely nothing that I can do to change it, so I’m just looking forward to the opportunities ahead of me. I certainly wish my former employer the best, along with all my former co-workers. They are an awesome group that I will sincerely miss. Good co-workers are often few and far between and these people are my friends as well.

Ultimately, I gave my best effort in my last week of work, trying to make things as easy as possible for the people who will take over for me after I’m gone. I don’t like leaving other people messes that have be cleaned up. By the end of the week, I was resigned to the fact that my job was gone and feeling really good about it. The timing is good and now I’ve got nothing but opportunities ahead of me; a blank slate, if you will. I can choose to make the best of it or squander it by staying angry or bitter. I’m disappointed in the way things played out when I left and I wish that my boss had been more open with me, but it didn’t happen that way.

Matt and I are thinking about all the different scenarios of what could happen in the next few weeks. We’re analyzing it and figuring out what our limits are and what we’ll do if things don’t go well with my job search. I’m choosing to stay positive and have an open mind. We’re going to be fine one way or another. I’m talented and competent and every employer I’ve ever had has been more than happy with my abilities and contribution, regardless of how my employment ended. I found out from an employment agency that knows me well that one of my former bosses still - 5 years later - asks for candidates like me to fill her positions. Considering that the job was so awful that I quit before I had another job (and she knew this), I’d say she was happy with me. Because of that, I’m confident that I can find something sooner than later.

Time to get to work on it now, though!