My employer is cutting back on their spending. To be honest it’s terrifying. I wish I could say that this was surprise and that they’ve been horribly irresponsible with their finances. But that’s not in true.
The truth is that I work for a big company so no one person is responsible. Each area is responsible for trying to get the best deal possible and some are better than others at this.They not only pay extremely well but offer an array of benefits which I know would cut into their profits. For the past few years the finance guy has been sounding the alarm – letting us know that we need to be more conservative and sharing that staff cutbacks would be coming down the line.
Last April it happened. Thirteen members of my union* were laid off within a week. This really isn’t that many when one puts it in percentage form since it’s about 2% of staff. That means that 98% of us were fine. The company has decided to slowly reduce staff over the next 5 years so in April another 2-3% of existing staff can expect to be let go.
I’ve been trying to not let this get to me. These are the things I tell myself:
- My department is already understaffed
- I’m the only one who does this role
- My department handles some pretty high profile things and works with an array of areas across the company
Today it’s not helping. A colleague e-mailed a group of us this morning to advise that she’s been made redundant. The union has put her on a list so that she will be considered for any upcoming jobs before they’re posted. She’s upbeat and has told us not to be concerned for her. The thing is her role was similar to mine in that it was an office of two and no one else does the role. Even my manager was surprised at this news.
Today I’m afraid because:
- if I was to be let go I have enough funds to sit tight for a month or so.
- I haven’t educated myself enough about the protection I would receive from the union or if I would get paid out.
- I know that it’s not a positive climate out there so I have no idea how long it can take for me to get a new job
I need to not give in to the fear that is trying to consume me at the moment. If I do give in I know that I will put my life on hold. I’ll be terrified to spend money and therefore will put myself back into an awful debt cycle where I pinch pennies and bleed pounds.
So here’s the truth that I need to remember:
- I have no control over the spending cuts or the future
- My budget is allowing me to save, pay down my debt, and live a joyful life
- I do have a savings and will be able to be without a job for at least 2 months at my current spending
- I am a competent employee and have connections throughout the company
- I currently live below my means so even if I were to take on a job that pays less my quality of life won’t suffer greatly
I’m still terrified but I’m hoping that by acknowledging these truths I can stave off the panic I’m feeling and continue to make good choices.
*There are three unions at my place of work as the three groups do vastly different types of work.