A few months ago,  I blogged about the positive side of a layoff. After being laid off from IBM in November 08, I managed to find another position in the company right before my 30 day window was up.  I was excited about the new position as a Lotus Telesales Rep and looking forward to starting after the New Year.

empty-phonesUnfortunately, lightning struck again on January 21st.  After being on the job in my new position for about 2 weeks, the entire department was eliminated.  I was given until February 23rd to find a new position.  Wow!  That was a shock.  Even though I had heard all the rumors about more impending layoffs, I thought that since I had just been effected, I would have some kind of “immunity”.  I mean, how could they do this to me again so soon? It took everything I had in me to find that position, and now it was being eliminated.

I gathered up my things (I didn’t have much, since I’d only been in the office for 2 weeks) and went home to think.  I knew that I didn’t want to go through another frantic search in a company that had most of their open positions frozen.  The time and energy I put into the last search left me mentally exhausted.  Not to mention the tremendous amount of competition there would be for any open seat, given that thousands of other employees received the same news that I did that day.

It didn’t take me long to conclude that my IBM career was over.  Over the past 13 years, I had some great times, worked with some amazing people, and got the chance to grow my horizons in ways that I didn’t know were possible when I joined as a college graduate.  I was given a fair severance package that would allow me some time to reflect on what my next move should be.  I started my external job search and kept an open mind and positive attitude.  Even thought the media was reporting on the terrible odds for job seekers, I knew I would find something perfect for me.

When I walked out of IBM on February 23rd, I had a job offer with an IBM Business Partner.  They wanted me to start immediately, but I needed to take some time off to spend with my family and recover from the stressful period we had survived.  That’s part of the reason why I hadn’t blogged in a while.  I needed to step back and focus on things that had nothing to do with work.

I am very greatful for the way things turned out.  To everyone else out there who is coping with a job loss, I know how difficult it can be.  Keep a positive attitude, ask everyone you know for help, and don’t be afraid to take a risk and try something completely different.

Coming up next:  What I did on my unemployement vacation 🙂