Social Question

filmfann's avatar

Have you ever been laid-off?

Asked by filmfann (47648points) January 21st, 2012

My brother-in-law got laid off yesterday, after working 26 years for a winery.
Ouch!
Have you been laid-off?
How many years had you worked there?
Did you see it coming?
How long was it before finding another job?

Inquiring minds want to know!

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19 Answers

digitalimpression's avatar

I’ve never been laid off, but I was fired once. I deserved it.

Still it’s an unusually overbearing feeling of depression when you lose your job. I wish your bro-in-law luck! I’m sure having had a job for 26 years will ensure he is able to pick up the next job very quickly.

CWOTUS's avatar

Several times. I asked for and received a voluntary layoff in 1991 from a job I had held for about 12 years. Four years later I was “laid off” (really, fired because of my perceived allegiance to my fired boss – it was a two-person “layoff”) from my next job. Nine years later I was laid off during the telecom bust of 2001, when the company I had been working for less than a year had to make a 30% cutback in their production.

Now I’m back with what is essentially the same company I left in ‘91.

john65pennington's avatar

Nope, never been fired or terminated.

I did suddenly quit a job at Home Depot. I worked there for two years selling carpet. I sold at lot of carpet for Home Depot and made them a lot of money.

The manager called me in one day and stated that he was going to have to reduce my salary, that some of the other employees had learned of the salary Home Depot was paying me and threatened a strike, if their salaries were not equal to mine.

Needless to say this hit me the wrong way. I told the manager that this problem was between him and the other employees and not he and I.

He did not back down and I walked out that day to never return to Home Depot. This was in the 80s. I would have sued them today for this action against me.

Blondesjon's avatar

I started a new job back in June and have been laid off twice. I was warned by the fella that hired me that this might happen during the winter months, since I was new, and both layoffs were only for about 5 weeks. When I was called back the first time it was to start a totally different job than the one I was hired to do. When I got called back the second time it was because they couldn’t keep up without me. As of right now the group of 15 or so others who got laid off when I did are still laid off until this spring.

I never looked for other work because I knew I would be called back. I tightened my belt, filed my unemployment, and kept an ear open for any side work that paid cash under the table.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I was laid off in 2007 from a job that had been really promising, they were investing a good deal in me. No, I didn’t see it coming. Our company was a good performer and was bought up by a nationwide company, we employees thought that was going to give us safety through the collapsing real estate market but that company almost immediately filed bankruptcy. Most of our company branches and the admin. office I worked out of were closed.

Because I had kept working for a previous employer one day a week, I was able to hit them up to take me on for more and more hours until I was f/t. This went on about a year until I quit in order to travel out of state and then returned to take a different f/t job. In my line of work, it’s tough to be unemployed.

Self budgeting is a completely separate thing though. Where once I had kept a savings buffer, when I was laid off I’d just recently put every bit of money into buying my mom a house. I was financially blindsided and scrambled to keep up. Even with the help of friends, I lost our house.

jerv's avatar

I did temp work for a couple of years, so I have been laid off a few times, but I have only been laid off from a permanent job once. I just moved to Seattle and worked at a machine shop for a month before business dropped (they mostly did fishing boats, which are seasonal anyways) so, after the busy season ended, they laid off over half the shop. I saw that one coming since they told me up front that they usually had a 4–6 week layoff around February. Well, that shop never picked back up, so that layoff wound up being permanent.

The job market in this area is competitive; grunt jobs got hundreds of applicants per hour, and in my field I was competing against people with 10–25 years experience compared to my 5, so it took me thirteen months of applying for any job I was capable of before finally getting another job.

The kicker is that, due to the timing of my move, I had to file unemployment with the state of NH, not WA. They paid me for twelve of those months, and then wanted six of those months back because they claimed I was supposed to file with WA. The courts told them otherwise and they wound up dropping that claim and paying me for that thirteenth month, but it was an ordeal that took well over a year to resolve.

auhsojsa's avatar

I’m from San Diego, Ca. I was laid off. Doing Quiznos for about 2 years before my boss decided to cut his losses and close the franchise. He said that the company said he wasn’t allowed to control the prices and had lower them. In our town, which was a Navy town, the Navy guys seemed to have no problem paying 10 bucks for a prime rib steak sandwich and combo large. The company wouldn’t allow for personal prices during about a 5 month stretch. It’s so stupid to me because even though banks were bailed out, they wouldn’t hand my boss a loan. And I was on my way to fulfilling my American Dream. Full time school while getting about 35 hours each week to close the shop. Man I miss working so much, and I got hooked up with that job. There was a crew of about 8. I just remember busting my tail with a short staff but enjoying the challenge. Now, it seems I can’t find a job. No matter how good my intentions are and how hard and good of a worker I know I can be. For anyone for that matter. But I feel that my black eyed birthmark is a deterrent for employers who don’t know me. So my only hope in life is to know someone who works somewhere. It’s been about a year and half now and I’m still unemployed. Am actively seeking work as well while going to school full time. I just get the sense and this overall feeling that somehow I don’t fit in. Like I’m destined to not get a job anytime soon. I wonder if it’s because since the 7th grade all the news has been about is, Terrorism and then in my young adult life, Economy failures. My culture and outlook on life is a tough one at the moment.

Coloma's avatar

A lot of my work is seasonal as I live in a tourist community that falls into a deep sleep during the off season from October until May.
So, technically I am “laid off” during the winter season every year.
Bottom line, things happen and no-thing is forever.
We all have to be prepared to reinvent ourselves multiple times in life.

I must feather my nest well during the prosperous season so that I can hibernate in comfort during the winter months. :-)

marinelife's avatar

I have been laid off. I did know that it was coming. There were signs that the business was failing. There were earlier rounds of lay-offs.

All of that said, I still felt bad at the time: in shock, unwanted.

I got another job within a few weeks.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I’ve never been laid off. My husband, while at a past company had his hours cut back. He was a salary employee. They cut his hours just prior to filing bankruptcy.

Luckily, we fully prepared his resume the day he came home and announced his hours were cut. It allowed him extra time to job seek prior to no longer having a company to work for.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

Yeah ,I have been laid off,and did see it coming and always found a new job before unemployment ran out.

bkcunningham's avatar

My home bureau was closed when a new company bought the firm I was employed with for nearly eight years. I was offered a job in the main office and turned it down because of the driving distance. It was the first and only time I’ve drawn unemployment insurance benefits.

Initially, I felt sad and angry because it was determined that the economy of the three state area I covered didn’t warrant a bureau. The entire community was irrate at the new company. But, thus is life. I wasn’t shocked. When your company gets bought, you expect changes and layoffs. It is always a jolt to the system though.

It turned out that my mother went into renal failure within days of my last day of work. Because of my layoff, I was able to be with her and assist my parents during the initial shock period that involved several emergency surgeries. That is something I’ll never regret. Everything happens for a reason and everything works out in the end.

I wasn’t even looking for a job and a company called me and made me a job offer within six months of my layoff.

SuperMouse's avatar

I was laid off back in 1996 when the bank I was working was taken over by another bank. We had about three months notice. I had been there seven years and got three weeks pay for every year I was there. Between that and all the sick and vacation time I had accrued, I got a decent severance package. I actually haven’t held a full time job since then because I went on to be a stay-at-home mom and now I am finishing my degree.

geeky_mama's avatar

I was fired once. It was quite a blow to my self-esteem because I’ve always been a hard worker and quite a people-pleaser.

I was fired because the boss didn’t like me – really, honestly she told me so and then fired me. It turned out this was a frequent M.O. of hers over the nearly 15 years she worked at this very large corporation. Anyone who seemed potentially more capable than her was perceived as a threat – and she’d fire them. (Well, first she claimed my work as her own for a time, got caught by one of her peers and then when embarrassed and angry about that she had me fired.)

I had tried very hard to get along with her because this job was providing medical insurance for all of my family and I was the primary wage earner. She knew she had me in a tight spot and was truly abusive and mean. I have stories that would curl your hair to hear about the things she did and said.

I didn’t know that she could get away with any of this until I talked to a lawyer. And yes, in at-will hiring states they can fire you for literally no reason.

My firing was less than a month after a promotion and my performance had always been stellar. The HR at this company had a policy of always backing the Manager in any situation where conflict arose-so I knew I’d get no protection. (As it was, I’d already attempted to report some of her clear-cut abuses. Things I had in writing or outrageous demands she put on me..but HR did nothing. I now think I was naive to think that going to HR was ever a good course of action.)

After she had worked there nearly 15 years and fired approximately 12 people (and her team was a team of 2 or 3 – so she never had more than 3 employees report to her) they finally got wise and got rid of HER.

Although I didn’t see my own firing coming (I’d just been promoted, I had hope I could get away from her and transfer to another team) earlier in the same week she fired me (she fired me on a Friday afternoon so that I completed all my work. Nice, huh?) I had an interview with another company.
I was fired on Friday afternoon, talked to my lawyer on Monday morning, and had an offer from the other company by Tuesday (which I happily accepted).

I ended up getting a nice severance package from the company that fired me (after refusing to sign any papers at the HR exit interview and sending a formal letter on my lawyer’s letterhead stating my requests) and started my new job (at higher pay and for a wonderful new boss) about a week later.

The sad/funny thing is…if she’d just waited a week or so I would have resigned. It would have cost the company a lot less money (they wouldn’t have had to provide me the severance package). I suppose this is why, just a few years after she fired me, they finally fired her. Not sure why it took them so long to figure out that she was the bad apple, not all the people she’d fired..because everyone else in our particular industry KNEW this about her.
In fact, her incompetence, arrogance and nastiness was so widely known in our particular (small-ish) industry circles that I hear she’s never been employed by anyone else in the (several) years since her own firing.
She went looking for work at vendors that she’d abused and refused to pay, and with agencies that she’d screamed at over the phone and they all (small wonder!) declined to hire her.

I don’t harbor any ill-will for this former boss..but I do think she’s an excellent cautionary tale. You should NEVER treat anyone poorly. You never know who you’ll be turning around and asking for a job in the future.

tranquilsea's avatar

I was laid off several times as the company I was working for was in its death throws. It didn’t bother me that much as the lay off pushed me in another direction that engaged my talents in a much better way.

Bellatrix's avatar

I have been laid off. They needed to cut one member and the CEO had two secretaries who did pretty much nothing and so, he gave one of them my job. Given I had held the fort after my boss suddenly died, I was a bit surprised to say the least. It was the nature of the place though.

I was young and I felt terrible when it happened. It knocked my confidence because it seemed so unfair (I was so young I still believed life was fair!). It was in the middle of a recession too so it took me about six months to find another ‘good’ job. I found work but not something that I would want to do long term.

My husband was laid off a number of years ago too. I think men especially can feel their job is really part of ‘who’ they are. He was lucky he had his own business as well as his paid job. We decided he should focus on that and he has and it has worked out for the best. It still took him a while to get his head around the fact that he didn’t have the role he had had for over 20 years though.

I hope your brother-in-law finds something quickly.

filmfann's avatar

My brother-in-law is 60 years old, and most companies hesitate hiring someone that age.
He had planned to retire in 2 years, but now isn’t sure what he will do. It will be difficult finding someplace that gave him the flexable hours he had.

Bellatrix's avatar

Yes, I can see that would be true and especially in your economic climate at the moment.

What about encouraging him to do some voluntary work? My dad didn’t get retrenched but he did have to give up work earlier than he had planned to and I think he felt quite lost for a while.

I think feeling valuable and needed is really important at any age. I am also sure he has a lot of important skills and knowledge to impart. We have things like mentoring roles here. Perhaps there are similar things where you are?

If he can manage without the income (and hopefully he got a great package) perhaps you can help him to see this as an opportunity to do things he has always wanted to do?

SpatzieLover's avatar

@filmfann He should look for a head hunter/job placing firm that places people age 50 & above. We have a few here in my local. They are amazing at resume assistance.

My husband did IT work for the best known one in our area. They specialize in resume & interview preparation prior to placement. They do full-time and part time placement.

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