This post with compare two different pharmaceutical sales representatives that recently got laid off but one sales rep, lets call her Jane landed a job within a month, while the other pharmaceutical rep, Mike went a year without landing his next sales job.
When Jane got notice of being laid off, she immediately shifted her focus on landing a job as her new job. She updated her sales resume, sales brag book, and begin teaching herself how to effectively land her next sales job. She also tapped into her network via Linkedin.com, by phone and email announcing that she is currently looking for a job and asking her network to keep her in mind if a sales job comes available. She also brushed up on her job interviewing skills by working with a career coach to help her feel more confident when she gets a call for sales interviews.
Mike on the other hand, didn't feel the urgency to jump on looking for another job because he had a nice severance package that allowed him to be without a sales job for about 3 months. He felt that it was a great time to take some time off and will get search once the severance runs out.
Within ten days, Jane started getting replies from the jobs she applied for and started scheduling phone interviews. While working with her career coach, they explored what direction she wants to take with her sales career and next steps and decided to not only look within the pharmaceutical sales industry but to also open up the search in other industries which helped her find many other sales job opportunities. On day ten, Mike was enjoying the great T.V. shows that he had been missing and brushed up on his video game skills. Life was great and relaxing for Mike, but sales jobs won't come knocking on the door and times have changed where sending out a resume will result in multiple sales interview options.
On week 3 (day 21), Jane has started to see all of her hard work pay off as she was getting leads for sales job opportunities via phone calls and emails. Some of them didn't pan out or didn't interest her, but she had options. Jane also had sales job interviews scheduled for the week and as she started interviewing, she gained confidence with the interview process and actually turned down a sales job offer that really didn't match what it was that she was looking for. Mike on the other hand is now hooked on video games and feels that he has time to start looking soon.
Within a month (day 30), Jane had been busy interviewing, working her network and perfecting her interviewing and had been out exploring different sales jobs. She had two offers on the table and decided to go into the digital adverting industry and was excited to start within the next 2 weeks, so she took some time off before she started to relax and congratulate herself. Mike on the other hand has two more months of time left with his severence and didn't start until he had one month left.
He started by updating his resume and started applying for other pharmaceutical sales job. Since the pharmaceutical sales industry has gone through some major changes lately, the competition for jobs was fierce and he did not receive any calls. He was shocked because before, he could send out his resume and he would have calls within the week. He then recalled the website Linkedin that he started about a year ago but hasn't updated since signing up and with his 14 connections, he didn't find any value in using that for his job search.
Month 2 (Day 60) - Jane has already started her new job and learning the ropes in her new industry and she is enjoying learning new skills and meeting new people. She continues to get some responses from her other jobs she applied for but she is well on her way with her new sales career, so she declined the invites to interview. Mike on the other hand started to feel the heat as his severance was starting to run out and he now understands why everyone was talking about the sales job hunt environment has changed. He decided to go on his own and not seek any help or read any books, watch a video course on interviewing or even explore outside his current industry which really limited the opportunities he could go for.
By month 3, Mike's severance had ran out and he had to apply for unemployment. He started to get a few replies back but only landed a few phone interviews, that didn't lead anywhere. By month 6 he was able to be selected for some face to face interviews, made it to the final rounds but wasn't selected as there were many other candidates competing for the same position. He started to get discouraged and people interviewing him asked how long he has been out of work and stating 6 months didn't help his case.
After a year of searching and interviewing, he finally landed another sales job in pharmaceuticals with a lower salary then his position. It was actually a contract position, but he needed to take the sales job because he had been out of work for too long. Mike now also has another sales job.
So as you can see, the two took two different directions with their sales job search. Many other people may go the route that Jane took and it might take longer than a month, but by taking the sales job serious, you will gain momentum. Jane also opened up herself for other opportunities as she looked in different industries other than just in pharmaceutical sales. She tapped into her network, and also sought help from a professional career coach.
If you are looking to land your next sales job fast after being laid off, don't wait until your severance runs out, start the process sooner rather than later and actively make searching for a job your job.