Dealing with redundancy

Dealing with redundancy


Having strategies to support your mental wellness at an uncertain time like redundancy is essential — and Nabs can help.

Redundancy is unfortunately a hot topic in our industry at the moment. Economic change hits our community first and fast, and with a recession to deal with, many businesses are having to make cuts to survive.   

Some of the biggest names in the business have been laying off staff for the past few months, with more set to follow.    

Redundancy can be a difficult and complex situation. Having some strategies to support your mental wellness at this uncertain time is essential — whether you’re a manager handling redundancies in your team or dealing with the prospect of redundancy of your own role. 

Let’s look at each situation separately. 

Redundancies in your team 

From the moment you deliver the news to your team that their roles are at risk, you’ll need to offer clear information about the process, along with support and compassion. However challenging or shocking the circumstances, you can handle your part with care and kindness. 

Be on hand to offer emotional, as well as logistical, support. You can’t underestimate the impact of redundancy. Be prepared for a rollercoaster of emotions from your team throughout the redundancy process, from initial shock to feelings of worry and upset.  

Be someone that your team can come to for help. Actively listen to them and ask open questions to help them understand where they’re at and what they need. Acknowledge what the person is telling you and keep the focus on them. For example, say “I’m hearing that you feel overwhelmed”, instead of answering with “I’ve been feeling overwhelmed myself”. 

Don’t worry about having all of the answers. You’ll play your part by holding space for your team to voice their concerns and feelings, and also by signposting them to relevant organisations for more help.  

Nabs’ support team are experts in redundancy as well as emotional support, so encourage your team to give us a call. We’ve got plenty of resources on our website, too, that can help, including our redundancy guide, so people can get help and information 24/7.    

While being a source of support, be sure to keep your boundaries, because the process will be a lot for you to handle as well. Agree a time to talk and keep to the meeting time; if the person wants to chat more, make another appointment time or signpost to Nabs if they need deeper support. 

Remember that it’s not just the people whose roles are at risk of redundancy who will be going through the mill. Their colleagues may also be shocked and upset. Perhaps they’ll be worried about the impact on their workloads or whether their roles will be next or simply that they’ll miss their colleagues.

Keep an eye on everyone in your team and watch out for any changes in behaviour or mood that might be cause for concern. 

Facing your own possible redundancy   

Being affected by redundancy (or any change process) can be daunting, isolating and filled with uncertainty. You may even be in the unfortunate position of handling your own possible redundancy while managing redundancies in your team. Either way, you will need to be exceptionally kind to yourself. It’s a lot to face. 

There are some actions you can take to feel more empowered during the process.  

Get an instant dose of information on the Nabs website. If you’ve had less than two years’ service with your employer, read our redundancy guide to get information on what to expect. If you’ve had longer than two years’ service, read this guide. 

If your redundancy situation is more complicated, give us a call for a confidential and compassionate chat. We’ll listen to you and take time to understand the specifics of your circumstances to make sure you get the tailored support you need. 

You’ll likely have a number of worries competing for your attention, whether that’s concerns over money and paying the bills or what to do next career-wise. Your confidence might have taken a knock too. That’s very common. Look at our financial wellbeing hub and sign up to the Nabs newsletter to discover our free monthly workshops that will give you the skills you need to thrive and move on after redundancy.

Don’t discount the emotional impact of redundancy, whatever level you’re at. Even though intellectually you know not to take redundancy personally — it’s a fact of business life — there will no doubt be a part of you that is taking the decision deeply personally and old insecurities may resurface. 

Sometimes, organisations provide coaching during or after the redundancy process, so be sure to ask your HR contact what’s on offer. 

Talk to our support team if you might benefit from some 1:1 therapy sessions or 1:1 coaching — Nabs can provide both.     

Visit nabs.org.uk or call 0800 707 6607 or email support@nabs.org.uk for help with redundancy.

Annabel McCaffrey is head of support at Nabs 

Mediatel Jobs banner

Media Jobs