Life has a way of throwing curve balls at you that test even the strongest of us. It gives us challenges to face, obstacles to hurdle, problems to solve and circumstances to overcome. It all creates uncertainty. And it can bring out the best or worst in us.
Last week a curve ball was thrown at the department I work in. Around 200 people were informed their jobs have been made redundant, taking effect by the end of the year. The rumour mill had been churning for some time but I guess most of us thought it wouldn’t happen. Especially the way it’d come about. We predicted a somewhat different scenario for this situation.
Despite all of this, it was still a shock to hear the actual words spill forth from the mouth of the head of the New South Wales department. You could have heard a pin drop as he explained how the business decision came about. Expectations and assumptions in the rumour mill still do not prepare you for the reality. It’s like you know someone is dying but it’s still a shock when the time actually comes and they pass away. It takes a while for it all to sink in.
Each person’s reaction was different. For some they’ve faced redundancy before. For some it is their first. Some were in disbelief. Some cried. Some walked around in a daze. It was definitely a huge disruption to the day to say the least. The day’s work productivity was effected as was the overall atmosphere. It was heavy hearts across the floor.
What we all had in common though was uncertainty for the future.
In the aftermath, it was business as usual. The same professionalism. The same goals and vision. The same deadlines and time frames. Our objectives hadn’t changed. Our aim was, and is, to keep our reputation and integrity in tact to the very end.
Everyone has had to tackle this situation and consider their next step – where to from here?
This is an opportunity to bring out the best in ourselves and use our strengths to overcome this circumstance and solve our problems. The company has been forthcoming with the details which led to the gut wrenching business decision to close down a whole department, which also affected their own jobs. It’s a great company to work for and it’s going to be hard to find another employer like them.
It has been interesting to hear what some people have decided to do to address and combat the redundancy. Some have already started to look for alternate employment. Some are hoping for redeployment within other departments of the company. Some have plans to take advantage of the situation to seize the opportunity for a career change. Some have plans to go into business for themselves. Some people are uncertain about what they’re going to do post redundancy.
For me, I am going to use the time to promote my book and build an entrepreneurial future.
One good thing to come out of this is that we have plenty of time to decide the best way to hurdle this obstacle.
It’s very encouraging to me to see everyone approaching our inevitable end with such positivity, despite some level of anxiety. It inspires hope that the tunnel is not as dark as it first appeared. It promises a new beginning and an end to the uncertainty. There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. Some just have more bends than others, so it’s harder to see the light. But it’s there.
Always remember there is a solution to every problem. It may not be a simple solution or easy to find, but there’s a solution all the same.