I Like George Clooney..but

The Oceans series of movies was great although Brad Pitt eating in every scene went beyond character building to just plain annoying. But I digress.

“Up in the Air” one of Clooney’s films shone a light on the outplacement industry that both surprised and horrified many viewers. If you haven’t seen the film or unfamiliar with the term, Outplacement is a service sold by a third party to companies who need to downsize staff. Frequently the employees being let go are senior staff with years of experience and are entitled to more than a last paycheck and a good luck wish.

The service menu varies. Some companies will offer counseling, resume building, finance advise about pensions in addition to actual job search assistance. The problem many employees face is that they are offered these services as they are still reeling from the news they are out of a job and the first reaction might be to refuse or reject help out right.

Don’t do that.

Take advantage of every service offered even if you have to do it through gritted teeth. You will need support as you transition and even the basics of constructing resumes etc. will be helpful.

I have always offered outplacement services and believe me it is not as fun as George makes it look. Mind you I wasn’t flying hither and thither I was talking to local people and trying to figure out how best to help. One gentleman left the office where he had received his walking papers and came to mine for the next step. Apologized as he grabbed my garbage can and well you can guess the rest.

Losing your job is right up there with the all-time biggest stresses and it is absolutely critical that you take advantage of any assistance offered. And if you are not offered outplacement services ask for assistance. Avoid committing to a time limit on accessing services to give yourself some time to think and plan. It’s a very big deal, treat it as such.

I think the most annoying thing for me about the film was that it didn’t show the toll dealing with the severed employees takes on the consultants IE moi. It is and should be a tough job helping people on their worst day.

Otherwise, I like George Clooney.