Video: My experience being laid off

I have gotten so many questions about my layoff experience a few months back.

Some questions include: How to prevent being low balled by recruiters? Is company loyalty still relevant today? How did you find a job so quickly?

To address them all, I decided to do an in-depth interview with Co-Founder of Dollars and Sense, Timothy Ho.

Layoffs are still going on with FoodPanda; Cisco and QualComm letting go workers last week

If you have friends who have been impacted, please do forward this to them.

1:24: How I felt when I was being given the news

3:10: Why do some companies retrench workers who are performing well, or have just received a promotion or a good bonus?

6:32: There is nothing to be ashamed of, here is why

14:00: Coping as a survivor of a retrenchment exercise isn’t easy. Besides an increase in workload, remaining employees may experience a lack of job security. Should they also start looking for new jobs?

19:15: Is loyalty to a company still applicable today?

22:15: Are you working harder for yourself or your boss?

27:00: Why workers today should think about retrenchment as part of their career journey

29:30: Can a worker who has been laid off still ask for a higher salary in their next job? Or should they be realistic and accept lower pay?

33:00: Is it true that HR recruiters will only want to talk to you if you have an existing job? Do you become less desirable as a worker once you have been retrenched?

Here are other resources which you might find relevant

The Parable of the farmer and the horse

How do I remain zen and happy even after impacted by tech layoffs?

When I talk about topics like non-attachment; 有舍才有的得; 無爲, sometimes it might be hard for the audience to relate.

So I’d share a story instead.

There is a Chinese parable about a poor farmer who lost his horse: 塞翁失马

A long time ago, a poor Chinese farmer lost a horse, and his neighbours came around and said, “that’s too bad.” The farmer said, “maybe.”

Shortly after, the horse returned bringing another horse with him. His neighbours came around and said, “that’s good fortune,” to which the farmer replied, “maybe.”

The next day, the farmer’s son was trying to tame the new horse and fell, breaking his leg. His neighbors came around and said, “that’s too bad,” and the farmer replied, “maybe.”

Shortly after, the emperor declared war and ordered all able-bodied men to come fight—many died or were badly maimed.

However, the farmer’s son was unable to fight and spared due to his injury. His neighbours came around and said, “well that’s good fortune,” to which the farmer replied, “maybe.”

This story tells us that sometimes “bad” things happen which carry a silver lining—and that it’s often in the way you look at things which determines their power over your spirit.

This is a very Taoist indeed—themes of yin and yang, balance, openness and receptiveness.

If you are going through a hard time in your life, I hope this story has been helpful.

I used my one month plus of being laid off meaningfully on a charity project for lower income students which was being featured by the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre.