Let’s talk about layoffs

The layoff news is bleak. Last week, 3.3 million people filled for unemployment, as COVID-19 spread and states issues stay-at-home orders. We are in a period of mass layoffs. Seeing those company layoff numbers are brutal but this chart from CNBC is what really put it into perspective:

As someone who graduated into the 2008 recession, that chart blew me away. I didn’t get laid off in 2008 but it was nearly impossible to find a good job in those years. I ended up taking loads of random jobs, mostly temporary, to get me through and pay my bills. Family and friends were laid off then too.

Seeing a chart like that just hurt my brain. Most of us know what it felt like to job search or work in crappy jobs during the 2008-2010 period. I’ve been talking with friends and we’re wondering if it’s going to feel like that again. Some say it’s temporary. Others can’t say we can be sure at all because global pandemic!

On top of that, I was laid off two weeks ago. I was contracting as a conversation designer for a conversational AI startup. So I’m joining the ranks of job seekers looking for work. It’s an odd position to be in – a career expert with a new book who has recently been laid off. It’s an identify shift for sure.

Book plug!

So I’m doing something a bit different for the time being. I’m interrupting interviews with career changers on my podcast to talk about layoffs. Instead of interviewing people about their career changes, I’m putting together a series to help job seekers navigate layoffs. Ironically, the last episode I did before our

We don’t talk much about layoffs as a society. Unless a family member or friend goes through it, layoffs are simply a number on the screen as we scroll through our daily news.

I want to change that. I want to talk about layoffs and more importantly I want to talk about how to get through it. From dealing with the initial shock after a layoff, to making a new budget, to finding a new job in a very competitive market, people need help finding their way after a layoff.

I intend to help them. If you know someone who has been laid off, send them my podcast, 50 conversations.

Here’s the first episode in the new series: An intermission: I just got laid off and everything is weird

Call for podcast guests: How did you make your career change?

tl:dr: I’m curating some specific career change stories. If you fit, fill out the intake form here.

I have a podcast for career changers. It’s been a ton of fun listening to stories about career adventures and how people navigate it all.

I recorded the first 20 episodes back in May. Now I’m looking to do another 20. I’m only doing 50 interviews (hence the name, 50 Conversations), so I’m looking for a few specific stories.

The goal of the podcast is to normalize career changes and show people the many paths you can take to a career change. In the first 20 episodes we covered everything from unexpected career changes, to mid-career changes and how to create your own career path. I heard from guests about what it’s like learn new skills by bootcamp, talked about international careers, and even how to bounce back after a layoff. The stories have been so good and I can’t wait to hear more.

The focus on this career change podcast is to highlight the how. Specifically, I’m interested in how people make these big changes and how they learn the skills needed to make the jump in to a new career. I’m focused on how the world of work is shifting, and how we need to upskill in order to adapt. The how is what makes this career podcast different than others.

This time around I’m specifically looking to dive into the learning paths that people choose as part of their career change. Whether it’s going back to school at 40, taking an online course to learn a new skills, or teaching yourself things from YouTube (all topics I’ve covered in my podcast), I want to hear how people learn new skills for their career.

So I’m looking for 20 new interviews! I’m looking to interview people who:

  • have graduated from a bootcamp and found a job in their target industry
  • taught themselves the skills they need through any combination of YouTube, online courses
  • learned new skills from an online course (like Coursera or Udemy) and changed careers
  • taken an online skill development course (like SkillCrush or Udacity)
  • changed careers after 40 or 50
  • changed careers into a remote job
  • had kids or were out of the workforce for a while to be a caregiver and then changed careers (shout out to the new moms!)
  • changed careers from a traditional path like medicine, law, firefighting, science research, or architecture into something completely different (see the episode: A Multifaceted Career: Scientist, Teacher, and Entrepreneur)
  • are working in a cutting edge field that most people don’t know about (example: I interviewed two guests who worked in conversational design last round – would love to interview someone at the intersection of AI and ethics)
  • have a liberal arts grads who have found multiple ways to apply their skills in their career
  • took an apprenticeship
  • aren’t college graduates who have made career changes

I’m also prioritizing stories from BIPOC and LGBTQ people!

Also please note: I am not interested in interviewing people who have started their own business. I have interviewed many of them for the first round and at this time the focus is not on starting your own business.

Interested? Fill out the guest intake form here and I’ll be in touch! Come same hi to us on Instagram while you’re at it.

The podcast is based on my new book for career changers.

Punch Doubt in the Face: How to Upskill, Change Careers, and Beat the Robots.