Why Losing My Job Was the Best Thing That Happened To Me

Ok, so I’ve copied the title from M over at There’s Value but I posted a comment there that she reckoned could make an interesting read, so I’ll copy and paste it here, with a little more info…

Getting a Job

After I graduated, I wasn’t having any luck with getting a permanent job so I ended up going down the temporary route. By and large, my jobs only lasted from a couple of weeks up to a month. 
I had been temping for about a year, going for interviews where possible when I was finally offered a permanent position at a local IT business. When I told the company I was temping for at the time that I was leaving, they immediately made me a counter offer – 6 months and then a permanent role. I accepted and turned the other job down.

I thought that as I’d been given a more secure role, things would change for me but no, I was still the temp, I didn’t get the training that was promised and to my horror, at the end of the 6 months, the permanent position did not materialise!

I was absolutely devastated and I think that was the first (and last) time I did the ultimate sin of crying in the office!

[Image from crsfinancial.ca]

Bouncing Back

I took a day off to compose myself (and wallow in misery) and then was back contacting my temping agency for job vacancies and was soon on another temporary job, one which ended up lasting 6 months, which gave me a lot of confidence.
As that job ended, I immediately got placed in a temporary position with a large global company. I turned up on the first day not really sure what the role was exactly, as my agency had ‘lied’ about my experience to get the placement!

Still, I learned quickly, got stuck in and two months later, got offered a permanent position, along with a coveted final salary (defined benefit) pension.

19 years later, I’m still with that same company, still enjoying my work which I find mostly interesting and challenging and have made some great friends over the years.

So yes, getting let go from that company back then was the best thing that happened to me, despite my feeling of utter devastation at the time! 

What Goes Around…

And a funny thing? 
Around  five years ago, our company bought out a smaller business and their staff moved into our offices. I recognised a few of their faces, as the newly acquired company was only that firm that let me go! They’d changed company name, hence I hadn’t batted an eyelid when I’d read in the company internal announcements that we’d bought out another business.

And what happened a few months later?

They pretty much all got laid off (all those that I once worked with did) as their business got absorbed into ours.

I didn’t gloat.


And then, only to myself.

Some may argue that I was a little mean to gloat and to be honest, I did feel a bit mean, as I’m not usually the kind of person who finds joy in other people’s misfortune.

However, I don’t recall any of them being particularly sympathetic towards me on my last day of work at their company – I was just a temp being let go, surplus to requirements, despite promises made to me.  
Plus none of them actually acknowledged me when they moved to our office –  you know how you know when people are trying to avoid catching your eye? That’s the impression I was getting from them. Maybe they just felt awkward, I don’t know but it would have been polite to just say ‘hello’.

Funny how things turn out in the end.

18 thoughts on “Why Losing My Job Was the Best Thing That Happened To Me

  1. Haha, thanks for the mention. But mostly, thanks so much for writing it up as a blog post – I knew it would make a great read! Hopefully many other people will think so too…


  2. Great read and I can definitely relate… about a month ago I was unemployed and looking for any kind of work after being 'let go' from two previous sales jobs after only a week or two, despite promises of good training and a real chance.

    I tried to keep positive and kept working towards getting a job and now I'm in a probationary 6 month period at a company with good history and potential for a long term career. Things work out, all you need to do is keep striving!

    Ps. I may be new to the community and havnt had a proper look around, but this blog is now one of the first I check! Keep posting!

  3. Hey M, thanks for suggesting that I write it up as a blog post – was wondering what I could use as a 'filler' post this week! 🙂

  4. Hi Gymoney
    Sorry to hear that you had to go through it with two previous jobs but the best of luck with your current role – it is worth continuing to strive!
    Also, good luck with the blog, I look forward to seeing how it develops and finding out more about you.
    Thanks very much for reading and stopping by to post!

  5. Nice post, Weenie. I know what you mean. I have at time had to jump on board the temping boat. It is sad how they are often treated by permanent staff members. In some regards it is understandable. But a little more empathy is worth it. Whether you believe in karma or not..it doesn't cost anything!

    Those times of least stability often prove the most valuable as you find something comes out of it in the end ( like you did). You just have to have your eyes open. Some people sadly have a too clear view of how they want their future to go. As a result, they miss the real golden opportunities that get presented to them.

    Certainly is funny how things turn out!

  6. Thought you'd just lost your job!

    A change is always good and a positive attitude always work.

    "I didn't gloat… much" Haha you deserved a wee gloat 🙂

    Mr z

  7. Hi Mr Z
    Well as fate would have it, we received an announcement today at work which could affect my job, but until I know more, I'm not getting worried about it.

    Continuing to be positive!

  8. Hi DD
    Yes, far better to have eyes open than be blinkered. There's going to be some instability at work over the coming year but I'm going to try to look for opportunities and be positive. Thanks for stopping by!

  9. I hope the recent announcement you mention doesn't mean having to go through stress and uncertainty about your job for very long. Management does have a tendency to make "things are changing but we don't know how it will affect you" noises which don't do anything to aid sleep at night. Here's hoping all is out in the open soon.

  10. I moved to a new job about three years ago, and within a couple of weeks there was a massive restructure announced. Luckily, for me, it didn't impact me in my new role, although it did impact others.

    There have been quite a few of these restructures since, it seems that whenever someone new starts high up in the chain they like to throw their weight around by doing yet another restructure.

    Like you say, all us minions can do is remain positive. I'm sure it will be fine, and like Cerridrwen says hopefully they don't drag it out too long.

    Mr Z

  11. Hi Cerridwen
    Things could happen in a matter of months or could be drawn out over a couple of years…whichever, I'm going to just try to ride it out in a positive way. This could be a great opportunity for me but if not, I'll make the most of the options available to me. The worse thing as you say is not knowing more but info should be more forthcoming soon (I hope!). Thanks for your kind comments and best wishes.

  12. Hi DP
    Thanks for stopping by and glad I can entertain you with my blog!
    Good luck with your own blog and all the best with the new job!

  13. Haha, we all love a bit of schadenfreude!

    PIP had a similar post but with a slightly different outcome a few years back which you might find interesting: http://www.passive-income-pursuit.com/2013/02/how-getting-laid-off-was-best-thing-for.html

    Companies tend to treat young people and temps like dirt which is really annoying. I often worked for the promises of a payrise and so on in my early career with no actual guarantees of anything. Nowadays I'd be like… "can I have this in writing" etc… but back then I thought they were doing me a favour by just giving me a job, it's hard to get out of that mindset (well for me it was) that I was also doing them a massive favour by providing them with my services.

  14. Thank TFS and thanks for linking that incredible post – what a great read!

    Haha, my daily mantra at work is "can I have this in writing" (both work and or HR related) and although it's not good for the inbox, I religiously save my emails as you never know when you need them years down the line!

    Yes, we were all quite naive in the early days of work, not the cynics we are now haha!

    Thanks for stopping by!

Comments are closed.