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10 things you should do when you get fired!

Updated: Mar 26, 2020

Getting fired can be devastating but it can happen to anyone and it is important to know what needs to be done in such a scenario.

A man preparing to leave his office after being fired from his job.

"You are fired." - Three words no employee would like to hear, certainly not an employee that loves his/her job. From poor performance to being a bad fit, there are many reasons why you could be fired and it can happen even when it's not your fault. However, it's not the end of the road and you can still have a successful career and not let it affect your mindset. Here are the 10 things you should do when you get fired -

1. Ask for the reason behind termination. It is important to know the reason behind your termination as it will help you understand areas where you can improve and learn. This will also help you avoid the same mistakes in your next place of employment. Apart from that, knowing the reason behind being fired will also let you know if you've been wrongfully terminated in which case you need to know your legal rights.

2. Save everything that you may need. Save all work samples, files and other documents you may need as part of your portfolio for future jobs. Also, save the contact information of colleagues, clients and other vendors with whom you may have a good relationship. You may reach out to them and network to find your next place of employment.

3. Resist yourself from negativity. It is common to be angry and frustrated on being fired but it is important to always be professional about it. Avoid negative comments and avoid posting anything negative about the company, your manager or your colleagues on social media. It is best to not say anything rather than say something negative. People have long memories about negativity and you do not want a bad reference. Take the time to express gratitude and thank everyone who has helped you to be productive in your role.

4. Severance package.

Know if you're eligible for a severance pay and any other benefits such as unused annual leave. If yes, you may need to negotiate with the employer to obtain the maximum possible severance pay. It is common for companies to pay for employees who have been laid off but not so common for employees who have been fired. Apart from a severance package, you may also qualify for unemployment benefits based on the laws of the country and the reasons behind termination.

5. Update your Resume, Cover Letter and LinkedIn Profile.

The most important step after being fired is to remain positive and hunt for jobs again. Having an updated Resume, LinkedIn Profile and Portfolio is a great way to move into job search mode quickly and demonstrate the knowledge and expertise that you possess. There isn't a need to mention being fired on your resume, cover letter or LinkedIn profile. Begin networking with your LinkedIn connections and write recommendations for others while asking for a recommendation for yourself.

A man planning what needs to be done after being fired from his job.

Note that it is always considered wise to have an updated resume ready with you regardless of being fired or having a plan to quit. However, it is very common to find many people neglecting this and only worry about having their resume updated only when they are in search of another job. It is a lot easier to update your resume when you are on the job as the details are fresh in your mind. The longer you stay at your job, the more difficult it is to update your resume after you have left, with the long list of projects, job titles, references, job skills etc. to be added. Related - 7 reasons why you need an attractive resume!

At The Side Hustler, we realize the importance of that, which is why we are offering you an opportunity to avail of our Professional Resume Writing Service.

We can help you create an eye-catchy Resume, Cover Letter and an optimized LinkedIn Profile with an appropriate layout that is relevant to your target industry using professional language that is proofread without any spelling errors or grammatical mistakes.

Write to for more details. 6. Be honest in your future interviews.

When asked for reasons of leaving your job in future applications/interviews, be honest and state that you were terminated. Although it may seem more appropriate to lie to secure your chances of landing the job, lying about it will only cause problems for you. Also, avoid badmouthing your past employers, colleagues and workplace in any future interview. It creates a bad impression and will surely put you out of contention for the role.

7. Analyze yourself and learn.

Use the opportunity to improve and work on your weaknesses. Learn new skills and certifications through courses and add more value to your resume. If you've been unhappy in your career path, being fired is a great opportunity to reassess your career. Opt for the career path that you have always wanted. The ultimate satisfaction is achieved when one opts for a career path where they can maximize their true capabilities and strong points.

8. Start budgeting.

Being fired also means not having a regular paycheck which requires you to start budgeting. Budgeting begins with knowing your needs and wants. Start budgeting for your needs and cut out any other expenses. Also known as the bare-bones budget, where you focus solely on your necessities. You can hold back on your wants until you land a job or earn money through a side hustle.

Your priority should also be to increase your savings and build an emergency fund before you get fired.

Find tips and ways to save money, here.

Even though the average length of time to find employment is just over 6 weeks, when fired, and looking for a new job you need to have enough money saved to meet a minimum of 6 to 12 months of expenses. Hence, it is important to take charge of your finances and control your spending habits before it is too late.

9. Consider a side hustle.

A side hustle is a great way to earn money and reduce your dependence on one source of income. Besides that, you can even turn your side hustle into a potential career path or a full-time business. Explore your options and note down a list of things that you are good at, are of interest to you and can help you earn money. This helps you in finding a niche where you can successfully get your hustle going.

10. Don't lose faith in yourself.

The key is to remain positive and always believe in yourself and your capabilities. Know that it will always get better, it is a part of your learning experience.

The Ultimate Guide To Getting Your Finances Back On Track is a book that aims to help the user in being smarter about their finances. This guide contains seven sections - Financial Goals, Expenses, Savings, Income, Loans & Debts, Budgeting, and Investments. Each of these sections explains everything you need to know about Personal Finance in simple terms. By the end of this book, you will have learned the fundamental principles that will help you in maximizing your income, decreasing your expenses and increasing your savings that will overall kickstart your process of truly building wealth.

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Perfect time to reflect and look at better opportunities in life. Plus you can start many smart money habits once you are in financial crunch.


Jay Bloom
Jay Bloom
Oct 03, 2019

Great post. I followed my dream to start my own small business when I got fired. Haven't looked back.

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