Thriving After a Mid-Career Lay-Off: Leveraging Career Counselling for Successful Transitions

Jun 27, 2023 | Outplacement and Career Transition

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mid career laid offAre you in the midst of a mid-career layoff? You are not alone—layoffs can be a devastating setback for any professional. Layoffs leave many people filled with anxiety and unsure of what steps to take next. While it can be an emotionally challenging time, there is hope. Career counselling offers career support and expert advice to help you navigate this turbulent period and identify new career options.

In this article, we’ll discuss how to cope with a layoff and explain why taking advantage of outplacement/career transition services can be a smart career move.

Common Reasons for Being Laid Off Mid-Career

Although it is never as simple as one factor, there are several common reasons that employers give for letting go of employees, such as:

  • Organizational restructuring
  • Technological advancements
  • Economic downturns
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Company financial challenges
  • Outsourcing and offshoring
  • Strategic business decisions

Challenges Faced by Employees During Mid-Career Layoffs

Mid-career layoffs are a challenging experience for employees who often face unique difficulties during the process.

  • Financial Instability: This uncertainty can make it difficult for employees to cover their daily expenses and manage their finances, thus adding to the already overwhelming stress of job loss.
  • Emotional Impact and Stress: Many individuals question themselves, asking what they did wrong to cause their job loss. Often, the answer is nothing, as the process can be influenced by factors beyond their control. This lack of control exacerbates the negative impact on their confidence levels.
  • Work-Life Balance Disruption: The pressure from finding new employment and the emotional toll that the experience takes on individuals can significantly affect their personal and family lives.
  • Choosing Right Career Path: Individuals must assess their skills and interests to determine which industries and positions may be best suited for them.
  • Rejection and Job Search Challenges: Rejection and job search challenges can take a toll on an individual’s mental health and overall sense of self-worth.
  • Skills Relevance and Upgrading: With changes in technology and employer priorities, it can be difficult to determine what skills are in demand and how best to acquire them.
  • Fear of Repeating the Layoff Experience: Mid-career layoffs can be emotionally devastating. The fear of experiencing another layoff can be overwhelming and lead to a sense of distrust and uncertainty about the future.

How Career Counselling Can Provide Guidance and Support During Mid-Career Layoffs

Navigating a mid-career layoff can be a daunting experience. Here’s how career counselling and career transition services can support individuals to effectively handle a mid-career layoff.

  • Emotional Support: Career counselling can provide guidance and emotional support to help individuals navigate these difficult times. Psychologists and counsellors can help individuals process the trauma of the layoff, as well as any ongoing fears they may have about job instability.
  • Self-Assessment and Skills Evaluation: Self-assessment highlights what an individual can offer a future employer and the direction they see themselves heading. Through this process, career counsellors can help clients discover new career paths or potential growth opportunities within their current field, offering a renewed sense of purpose.
  • Resume Writing and Job Search Strategies: One aspect of career counselling is resume writing, which involves crafting a winning cover letter and resume that effectively highlights an individual’s skills and experience. Another important component is job search strategies, which can teach individuals how to effectively search for new job opportunities.
  • Interview Preparation: By providing helpful tips on how to present oneself in the best possible light, career counsellors can empower individuals to showcase their skills and experiences with confidence, so that they are more prepared to tackle challenging interviews and, ultimately, find their next career opportunity.
  • Personal Branding and Online Presence: In today’s digital world, a strong online presence is key to getting noticed by potential employers. A career counsellor can guide individuals on how to optimize their LinkedIn profile, build a strong professional network, and effectively use LinkedIn job search to find relevant job openings.
  • Identify Skill Gaps and Recommend Training Programs: Not only can career transition services assist in identifying skill gaps, but they can also recommend relevant training programs to help fill those gaps and prepare individuals for future career opportunities.
  • Networking and Job Market Connections: By providing networking support and career advice, outplacement services can help clients’ develop the skills needed to find new job opportunities. 
  • Long-Term Career Planning: The guidance and support provided by career counsellors can help individuals not only navigate the process of finding a new job, but also explore alternative career paths or pursue further education.

Overcome Layoff Challenges with Our Career Transition Support

A mid-career layoff can be a jarring experience, but it absolutely can lead to a better opportunity.  Many of our clients describe their layoff as a “silver lining” leading to even better things. At Canada Career Counselling, we understand the challenges that come with career development after a layoff, and our outplacement/career transition services are designed to help individuals navigate the transition with confidence.

We provide personalized guidance in areas such as job search skills, networking support, and identifying transferable strengths. With Canada Career Counselling’s career change help, individuals can learn how to cope with a layoff and emerge with a clear sense of direction for their future career development. Contact us today to learn more about our career transition services.



  • Dr. Laura Hambley

    Written by Dr. Laura Hambley, a Registered Psychologist and Founder of Canada Career Counselling. Laura is a thought leader on Career and Workplace Psychology, passionate about career development, having helped individuals and organizations navigate the latest trends impacting today’s organizations since the late 1990s. She is a sought-after keynote speaker for organizations, associations, conferences, and events. Click here to learn more.

    To schedule a 15-minute complimentary consultation with Laura, email our team at [email protected] or submit an inquiry form here. You may be able to use your insurance plan or extended health benefits to cover counselling and assessment fees.

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