Today my dad and all employees in the Annuities division at Genworth Financial were laid off -- a couple hundred, maybe more. Nothing personal, Genworth is just closing up shop on the annuities business.
Happy f'in New Year, right?
My dad has been working in the financial world since I was born, about 26 years. He's always been successful, well-respected, well-liked and at the top of whatever he does. He's never lost a job, been fired or laid off. In fact, as he's grown older he's become known in his world as the nice guy who's everyone's friend, hard-working and as loyal as they get. And he knows quite a few people after nearly three decades in the industry.
So, as you can imagine, when we got the news today it was a huge shock. You'd think someone like my dad who's a true veteran of this business would have more job security, even a tenure of sorts. Clearly not the case.
Although it's never fun to get laid off when you're the "bread-maker," he's taking it well. The rest of us are in shock but are taking it well also; staying upbeat. The good thing about my family is we're smart when it comes to savings, so we will get by and won't get kicked out on the curb.
Right away I personally got to thinking:
My first reaction was: This will be a great opportunity. I know my dad liked his job, but he didn't love what he was doing. I could just tell, whether he admitted that or not. So, instead of thinking how shitty it is to be laid off, I immediately thought how this could be the one big chance for him to do what he wants finally! I envision him pursuing one of his many passions and turning it into a career, being an entrepreneur... he'd probably do something involved in sports, something that doesn't require a suit & tie, something creative, who knows. The options are endless. My dream would be to see he and my mom go into business together and do something kick-ass and modern "ma & pop-shop" style. I know they'd make a good team.
My second reaction was: Shit, I really need to get my act together so I can fully support myself and help my family as much as I can. If I had to, right now I could be completely independent off my savings and income. I could even live on my own. It'd be a rather crappy lifestyle to some extent, but I could do it. However, OC rent prices might leave me broke by December. Anyways, point is, even though I still have one more semester in grad school, I have no problem taking on more work (if I can get it) to help my family through this time. Anyone need a coach or personal trainer? Lol.
Third reaction: Wow, the economy of today finally gave my family a blow. I should be sad, but I'm not. I'm a little pissed, but not outraged. Overall, I'm not even that upset. I guess it's just because I have tons of faith in my dad, mom, sister and myself. We're not the type who will resort to the bottle to cushion the pain ;)