Veteran business journalist, Terryanne Chebet was forced to cut down on her spending and luxury life the minute she was shown the door at Citizen TV in what was termed a “restructuring” process.
She termed her firing as an unprecedented and unplanned-for event that put more pressure on her as her children’s sole breadwinner.
However, the current Covid-19 pandemic has shown a side of the media industry that no Kenyan let alone media professional ever foresaw. But it has been done and masses have been sent home with a tomorrow that remains unknown.
Speaking from experience, Terryanne has admitted:
The feelings can be very intense, and confusing. The shock, betrayal, anger and even denial very quickly toss us into a world that’s constantly spiraling.
She has decided to give a message of hope and a foundation to stand on, to her now-affected colleagues. These are the key lessons her job loss has since taught her over the years:
1. Take control of your budget
This translates into accounting for every activity that compells you to dive into your pocket. Right from food, to transport, to rent and even entertainment and luxuries that are not a must-do. Have your budget at your finger tips!
Having gone through your budget, Terryanne believes all non-essentials should be out. Whether it is your customary drinking or eating out, moving to a cheaper house…name it!
But it will save you a lot if you first share this with your family and explain why it has to happen.
3. Restructure your debt
For cases of bank loans, set an appointment with your bank immediately and ask to set up a payment plan.
For those that you owe, give them a heads-up of your current situation but never go silent on them, if anything, keep in touch because communication changes everything.
4. Health insurance/Savings
At the least, ensure you have a health cover for your family, just in case things turn out for the worst.
However, soon as money starts flowing in, structure a savings or pension plan as this inculcates in you, financial discipline.
5. Re-write your own strategic plan
Sit down and make a projection of who you want to be in the next 5-10 years. Evaluate your career, what you are good at and start working on it immediately as you do some job hunting.
Question is: What can you do to generate income?
6. Update and clean up your CV on online presence
Good example being on LinkedIn. Terryanne believes this is the perfect time to work on your CV, touch it up and let recruiters know you are open for hiring.
Meanwhile, as you wait, work on trends in your industry to ensure you stay afloat in your professional line and to remain visible.
7. Network with industry peers
For this, reach out to influential people in your career line, attend webinars, online forums, prepare prior to the session and make sure you have one or two questions to raise because this sets you apart and shows you are engaged.
8. Build your personal brand
What do people think about you? Are you visible? Reliable? This should be a great time to work on and build your personal brand and stay up-to-date with trends in your industry.
9. Get physically active
Just like the title suggests, remain physically fit because this not only improves your brain health but your memory as well. Start slow and get better with time. The trick is to start.
10. Tell your story
Lastly, it is vital to open up, tell the truth, give your story as it is, no matter how uncomfortable it may get, the truth should be told. Tell it as many times as you can so that in the end, you can tell it well and comfortably.
August 12, 2020