Workers are out of jobs and strategies to overcome layoff panic

Looking for work after getting laid-off AMA NJ teams up with TIA

Shift your Mindset With Anjali Nair

Being unemployed is hard, especially when you receive the pink slip unexpectedly. What is even harder is navigating your next career move in the midst of layoffs. But, are you alone in this scenario? No. And, is it possible to land your next job? Yes.

The American Marketing Association’s New Jersey chapter teamed up with Anjali Nair, a thriving career coach, mentor, influencer, and founder of The Immigrant Academy (TIA), to share some insights on surviving job loss and the way forward. Read about her story, her mission for starting TIA, and tips and tricks on how to navigate one’s career amidst lay-offs.


Q: Tell us more about your journey from a job seeker and a newbie in the USA, to a successful career coach and founder of TIA.

A: My story is similar to that of any immigrant moving to USA. The first thing that hits is the cultural shock. I took a break from my career to cope with my new American life. My partner, my family, and my mentors helped me to learn and get familiar with the environment. The job market and demand were different, I had to go through a lot of challenges and emotional turmoil to become employable in the USA. I did a survey study with 200 immigrants and found many job seekers in my league have faced similar struggles, and this is where the TIA inception happened.

I capitalized on my experience and knowledge gathered during my period of job hunting to develop a program to assist people in understanding the skill gaps and restarting their careers. I transformed my techniques and strategies into a systematic platform, The Immigrant Academy – TIA. My company’s mission is to positively impact the lives of 10,000 people to create a sense of belonging and contribute back to the country. 


Q: You speak about networking a lot. How do you suggest managing and making use of social platforms, peer groups, and friend circles and converting them to job referrals?

A: Leveraging social media to share your stories and tap into your current and longstanding network to secure a job can be a valuable strategy. We live in a world where anything and everything is possible with a touch of a finger. If the past 3 years of lockdown have taught us anything it is that virtual connection is the future. Networking and building relationships is the key not just to secure a job but to grow one’s career. My first tip would be to be active on LinkedIn and do research on the job market. Talk to recruiters or reach out to employees of your dream company before applying for any job.

Another great start would be joining organizations like AMA where you can meet professionals in various fields and get hands-on experience working on various projects that can be reflected in your resume. Volunteering is one of the great and underrated opportunities out there, but often gets overlooked by candidates. Some of the other things I would suggest would be to join peer circles like Women in Technology or join a Slack channel linked to your job field, or follow career support communities on Facebook.


Q: So in your opinion volunteering with professional networking organizations like AMA is beneficial when it comes to one’s career? 

A: Absolutely! Marketing organizations like AMA serve as a channel to network more and get mentored by professionals in your relative industry or aspiring field. You get the privilege to learn, plan, and build your next career move. People in different industries and professions look for organizations like AMA to partner with like-minded people and conduct virtual and in-person events. I suggest making use of any available volunteering opportunity not only to increase your skills but also to enhance your knowledge and confidence.


Q: Let’s get back to our topic of discussion, lay-offs. From personal experience, I know panic hits first after one gets a pink slip. What are some of the tips you suggest for calming and composing oneself in such a situation?

A: Acknowledging ones feelings, and emotional acceptance is very important, at this point. I know it is easier said than done but if you are the glass-half-full kind of person, this is your opportunity to take a break! Validate your emotions during this time, it helps you to understand the situation and give a fresh start. 

Talk to someone who has gone through similar times, travel, spend time with your family if that makes you happy, or go back to your favorite hobby for some time. I suggest it is necessary to calm one’s mind and emotions before moving on to the next steps. 

You can only pour from a full cup. Promptly process your thoughts, choose from your options, and reevaluate your next steps.


Q: What are the top 3 things you would do as a priority in the event of a mass lay-off? 

A: Firstly understand that mass layoffs have impacted the job market, the corporate world, and the agencies and structure of today’s environment. It is a common phenomenon and is something not pertinent to an individual’s performance and work status.

Here are Fundamental things you need to handle during the period of layoff:

  1. Speak to your HR about the severance package that you are receiving.
  2. Check with your immediate relative like your spouse who is dependent on you for your insurance. What are the options and benefits of your life and health insurance? How many days it can be utilized? What is the cut-off period if the insurance is taken from you? Make sure your insurance is in place with the benefits.
  3. Check if you are eligible to file for unemployment, and if so get started on it. This will buy you some time for your next opportunity.  As a bonus tip, I’d like to suggest connecting with your boss and coworkers and keeping a copy of your past performance records with you. 


If you’re looking for marketing career opportunities in New Jersey, we’re here to help. Visit AMA New Jersey’s Job Board for open positions as well as resources and advice.

Photo of Anjali Nair, founder of TIA , she talks shifting mindset during a lay-off

More About Anjali Nair

Anjali’s experiences and her career journey as a new immigrant made her break barriers and develop a women-owned small business. The Immigrant Academy is an online career mentoring and life skills development platform for Immigrants in USA. The ultimate vision is to impact over 10k Immigrants restart their career and be a solution provider in every step of the way to make the American Dream possible.  

Connect with Anjali Nair 

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