Instead of posting one of my own blogs today, I'm sharing with you one of the best blog series I've read. Matt Smith, President of The A-Game, has written "The Break Up Blog Series" and this is Part One of that series (which will soon be appearing on Talent Revolution). I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!

The Break Up
Like millions of other Americans, I recently had the pleasure of breaking up with my employer. Some call it being laid off, a reduction in force, trimming the fat, whatever you choose, it feels like the time my first girlfriend broke up with me after a whopping 3 weeks of dating.

I made a commitment, honored that commitment to it’s fullest and still, my partner, my company felt they had to “let me go”.

Now, I don’t want to sound like a jilted ex, but this is the first time I have had a company break up with me and frankly, it did hurt just a little. I’m sure that just like that girl that I dated for two weeks before being ABSOLUTELY sure that I loved her enough to tell her, I’ll get over it, but I now know it’s an experience I’ll remember for a long time.

It definitely felt just like breaking up with that girlfriend too…the CEO of my company made a special point to schedule a lunch meeting and even through a 2 hour flight delay, persisted on still meeting at 3pm in the afternoon at a pretty nice restaurant for lunch.

We had some small talk, but you could cut the angst in the air with a butter knife. Then, she laid it on me, very gracefully. I of course said that while it’s hard, I understand her point of view, then we both cried a bit and came out saying we would still “be friends” and support each others work.

Over the next few days, while in mourning, I talked to my support network and told them how I felt, they all first laughed, then said, “you need to share this experience to help others in the same boat.” So, instead of joining the bitter ex club to share stories of break up trite, I thought it would be best to share some thoughts that have helped me move on.

Whether you have just been dumped by your company, are in the place where you have to kick some employees to the curb or just interested in how millions in our country feel, I hope you’ll join me over the next few weeks and share your thoughts.

Written by Matt Smith, President of The A-Game

Views: 8

Tags: a, break, game, laid, matt, network, off, smith, the, up

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Comment by Andy Swingley on April 1, 2009 at 7:27pm
Thanks to Matt AND Amanda for the post. This is exact feeling that Matt describes is the fear that keeps all of us engaged in our current positions and puts us on the defense at work which eventually gets us moving on one way or another.

Social media and networking are the employment insurance that should produce a feeling of security for all of us engaged here!

Non-Operator
Comment by Keith Bernhardt on April 1, 2009 at 4:56pm
Amanda,
Thanks for introducing us to Matt.
Excellent writing.

Keith

Non-Operator
Comment by Mark Frank on March 31, 2009 at 5:51pm
Amanda/Matt,

Interesting Blog. Thank you Amanda for sharing. I do feel and believe it’s natural to go through the emotional gamut as one faces the reality of layoff, termination, whatever it might be called. While you are correct there's no use crying over what you can’t change, I do think there is some legitimacy in going through the mourning process. The longer one is unemployed and the deeper one has to go into savings, borrowing, and/or deficit spending, whatever, the more negative feelings about the employer surface. Unemployment for many is an emotional rollercoaster with some good days and some bad.

I suppose there are many legitimate ways of dealing with loss; most have to go through a process of restarting and reemerging from job loss. Most of us pour ourselves into our work and when termination happens it’s a personal violation. Intellectually we all understand circumstance dictates feelings and it sounds as if your employer at least had the common decency of handing your separation/layoff/termination in a dignified and professional manner.

There are many variables in how this (termination/layoff) is executed by companies and therefore no pat response is right for every circumstance. The one point I would absolutely agree with you on and that is the need to move on quickly and channel energy more productively.

Mark

Non-Operator
Comment by Matt Smith on March 31, 2009 at 3:59pm
Paul- Great advice and thanks for the comment! The counseling (or coaching) piece really is a great help...might just talk about that in another post:)

Non-Operator
Comment by Paul Green on March 31, 2009 at 3:18pm
The comparison of a personal break-up and a business break-up is an apt analogy. The ensuing emotional and psychological impact, in dealing with feelings of inadequacy, fear for the future, anxiety, and depression, is difficult to deal with.


The strain of keeping up a brave front can be very wearing. I print this not as doom and gloom comment, but as someone who has faced the predicament.

Staying positive requires a support group; successfully negotiating the mourning and the above-mentioned issues can be helped with more personal counseling.

I took it hard. I had given my all and felt a deep rejection. I did, however, make it to the other side..............with a little help from my friends
Comment by Andrea Case on March 31, 2009 at 2:49pm
I am so glad you shared this Amanda as I am one of those that recently experienced a "break up" with my employer. It serves no purpose to be bitter because that will only be displayed in further actions of trying to land another job. Things happen for a reason and you must stay positive, which is what I am doing. I appreciate the share of this post.

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