Facing redundancy can be worrying for a number of reasons – you may not be sure what to do next, and financial concerns are also often an issue. The UDIA has estimated that approximately 40% of the industry has already lost their jobs, so finding another role can be difficult, particularly if you have only had experience in one sector. Don’t take it personally; remember that it was the job that was made redundant, not you. Be sure not to burn your bridges, although you may be upset, it is your line manager that may be giving the reference check for your next job.
Step One: Analyse your skill set.
Undertake an analysis of your skill set. What skills do you have that could potentially be transferred into a different role or industry? What parts of your role did you excel at? If you are a development professional you should map the skills you use through the process. For example – during the acquisition process what skills did I acquire? Analysis, research, business development, negotiation, contract exposure etc. Through the DA process, what skills did I use? And so on. This will help you to form a map of where your skills may be able to be transferred to another sector.
Take a look at your previous experience prior to property. Is there anything that you can leverage off to seek a new opportunity?
Step Two: Take a business approach.
It is natural to feel upset at being made redundant, but rather than letting emotions guide your actions, imagine that you are a business. As a business, what would be the best strategy to generate income? Identify your key stakeholders and consult them. Assess the market strategically. Rather than idly looking through job boards, look for areas that are growing. Where is money being invested? How can you use your skill set to generate opportunities in this sector?
Step Three: Don’t be an Island.
Utilise your friends and contacts. Unfortunately, it’s not often what you know; it’s who you know that can get you your next role. Make time to take important contacts out for coffee and pick their brains for ideas and suggestions. The more people that you know are looking, the more your chance of hearing of an off the market role increases. Remember to thank those that help you. Find a recruiter you can trust who will give you advice rather than just flicking your cv around town.
Step Four: Stay positive.
This could be an opportunity to learn new skills, do some work experience in a field you’ve always been interested in or undertake some study. A new employer will favour those candidates that were proactive during this period. As a recruiter that specialises in property and development, I spend a lot of time talking to executives in the industry about the crisis and try to gain an idea about their predictions of when the market will change. Unfortunately there is no easy answer: no one really knows. But your character is often defined how you responded to a crisis – it’s easy to be successful in good conditions.
Remember – it’s not all doom and gloom, and this could be an opportunity to diversify your skill set.