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GUEST COMMENT: If you've lost your job, it's often your own fault

Losing your job is one of the most traumatic experiences people can go through, but if you’ve been made redundant, it’s often your own fault.

Most people feel a deep sense of shock and despair. However, if you logically look at why it happened, it could lead to a better understanding of how to get back into the job market and more importantly, to actually get employed again.

Admitting responsibility, rather than laying the blame at the feet of someone else, is crucial in understanding where the problem lies and being able to adapt for the coming struggle.

As someone with nearly 30 years of experience working in banking, and who has been in the Middle East for nearly 10 of those, I can tell you there are usually five key reasons why you will have lost your job.

1) The company has moved on

Companies, the ones that survive, are constantly evolving and adapting to market conditions. The skill sets that you came with and contributed originally may no longer be the current ones. If this is the case, you will either have to retrain or find a company that does require your skill sets.

Remember, experience in a role doesn't make you automatically employable if the industry has moved on. Ensure you are abreast of new developments, and do not be fearful of embracing change. Change, all change, happens for a reason. All change occurs to make things better, otherwise it does not happen.

If you do not change and are left behind – it isyour own fault if you subsequently lose your job.

2) Your employer does not like you

Work isn't about making friends, but banking is a people business and you shouldn't underestimate how important having the right mindset with your fellow human being is. Being someone's friend is one thing – being a source of irritation is another.

If you are going to spend the best part of 12 hours a day working with people, especially someone you have to report to, you really should make the effort the ensure that the time involved with them is spent as amicably as possible. A great degree of tolerance and acceptance of how people are is required. If you have lost your job because you did not display any of the above, that could be why you are no longer employed.

3) You have consistently been a trouble maker

If you are unhappy with what you are doing, of course you will not feel comfortable, and this very often manifests itself as a rebellious nature. This form of behavior is very destructive and unforgiving when it comes to the workplace. It indicates that you are highly dissatisfied in your workplace and with people around. Be honest with yourself – have you been overly negative or consistently unconstructive?

One of the worst things an employer sees in people who work for him is the capacity to understand his needs and buy into his point of view. This is the best form of bonding an employee can have with their employer. It is also very powerful in retaining your use to your boss and ensuring you will not be on the short list when the word gets out that staff are being let go.

4) This profession isn't for you

Often people get into banking for the wrong reasons (very often the pay), but find that after a few years of coasting along that they don't truly understand either the business or the company. This is the surest sign that you are a square peg in a round hole and dismissal should not come as a surprise.

5) You have become too old

Age isn't the be all and end all, especially if you're able to avoid the four pitfalls above, but in this industry, if you're average and old, you'll probably lose your job. Getting back in can be even tougher.

This might seem like a harsh viewpoint, but by highlighting these points, my aim is to make sure you're in a better position for tackling the job market. Being saddled with bitterness and resentment is no state of mind to be in when searching for a new position, and the longer you're unemployed, the more likely it is that these feelings will fester.

Now, you're in a better position to find new employment, and I'll give some tips on how to do this in my next article.

Robert Moxon is currently CEO of Nonoo Exchange Company in Bahrain, a position he has held since 2009. He is a foreign exchange veteran and has worked for Citibank, Midland Montague Treasury and British Petroleum over the last 30 years. He moved to the Middle East in 1994 to start up the investments for BMB Investment Bank in Bahrain.

This article first appeared on our UK site.

AUTHORRobert Moxon Insider Comment
  • Pa
    8 December 2011

    Yes, I'm sure all the employees at Enron, WorldCom, MF Global, Lehman Brothers, Bear Sterns, GM, Bethlehem Steel, AIG, Bankers Trust, (shall I go on?) were all trouble makers, disliked, or were either too old or in the wrong profession.

    Obviously,any layoffs can be directly attributed to be the worker's fault, and not the short-sighted management, or the merger mania, or the insatiable corporate greed, or blatant criminal activity (anybody remember Madoff?). Yes, let's make sure that the person who dedicated 20 years of their life to a company is booted out in favor of either an inexperienced individual coming in at half their pay and benefits, or to an outsourced overseas operation at less than half their pay.

    Please, if you are going to offend people's intellects, at least be kind enough to give SOME lip service to the real reasons for layoffs.

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