Whether you loved your job or fought panic attacks every morning, getting fired sucks. If new opportunities await you, congratulations. But if you’re caught wondering how to keep your lights on, remind yourself to act with integrity. Here’s what to do when you get fired.
Keep yourself together.
No matter the reason, nobody wants to hear they have to leave their job. Keep your composure, stay calm and most importantly, try not to take the firing personally. A profanity-laden response will tarnish your reputation and burn any bridges you had.
Wave “goodbye” with grace.
As hard as it might be, leave on a good note. Thank your manager for the experience garnered, or say nothing at all before leaving. Keep your emotions in check. Don’t leave your former colleagues with unflattering memories. You never know when their opinion of your character will help you in the future.
Take the time to breathe.
Now for the toughest part. Ask yourself why you got fired, and be honest. Your management might have been terrible. The company might have had to restructure or there could have been things you did to get fired. Maybe the job wasn’t for you. Thinking about why you got fired will help you grow professionally. It can also go a long way towards providing closure in what is a stressful situation. This process will also help you plan an appropriate response if asked about your previous job.
What to do when you get fired? Not any of these things.
Flip Tables – Your time and money are valuable. It’s okay to feel upset after getting fired. But storming out and threatening to sue isn’t likely to do much. Unless civil rights violations occurred, walk away. Leave it behind.
Lie to Your Future Employers – Don’t lie at your next job interview, and don’t badmouth your former boss. They want to know that you have self control and integrity. Plus they are more interested in what you can do for their company than how much you hated your last job. Treat your future interviews like a date; don’t rant about your ex.
Let it Hold You Back – While you might have never imagined getting fired, it happens more often than you think. Sometimes it’s justified, sometimes it’s not, and sometimes it’s just how it goes. It’s important to understand why you were fired (whether or not the reasons make sense). Once you understand, move on. Get a new job, go for an even better job. Don’t let getting fired hold you back.