The professional association at which I worked for two years has hired a new VP/general manager of marketing. This new hire has decided to reorganize and rewrite the new job positions. He has told us all that we have lost our jobs but should apply for the new position if we feel qualified. We all did and only one person was successful in keeping his job. The new VP hired new people for the positions in two weeks; we were given severance pay and off the rest of us went. How do I position this job loss in interviews when I’m asked if I currently am working?
The Career Doctor responds:
I know you won’t totally believe me but the stigma of being downsized or fired has been greatly reduced thanks to the numbers who have been through it in the past decade. Your focus should be putting a positive spin on the departure – that the decision was mutual because both you and the company were going in different directions … then change the subject and focus on your strengths and the many benefits you can bring to your potential new company.
Whatever you do in response to the question please do not make excuses prolong the discussion or blame the VP. Doing these kinds of things will immediately end your interview.
I wrote an article that I think you will find useful: Getting Fired: An Opportunity for Change and Growth. The article has a number of useful tips resources and suggestions.
Best of luck to you.