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Tips & Training

11 resources for navigating grief, careers and the workplace

The pandemic’s staggering effects extend to personal and professional losses that deeply impact our sense of self and well-being, whether it’s navigating emotions from a loved one’s passing or dealing with dismissal from a decades-long career. Here are resources on what grief can look like in the workplace, how it affects career choices and how to deal with emotions after losing a job.

Articles on working through grief
7 tips for thoughtfully dealing with grief in the workplace (Fast Company)

Ideas to help managers support staff who are working while going through personal loss. Communication and empathy are key.

Grieving in the Workplace: Cope With Loss (Government of Alberta)

This article offers ways to help people cope with powerful emotions or support a bereaved co-worker.

How to navigate grief in the post-pandemic workplace (World Economic Forum)

This article illustrates global context on lives lost due to COVID-19, its inextricably negative impact on productivity, employee engagement and retention rates. It explores how compassionate company culture can help build a post-pandemic recovery.

Job Change and the Grief Cycle: The effects of losing our job or changing work role (The Open University)

This article explores the impact of job loss on people’s sense of well-being and worker identity.

When a Colleague Is Grieving (Harvard Business Review)

While this article was written before the pandemic, it provides management with guidance to humanely help bring out the best in team members who are mourning.

How grief affects career decision-making
Can Grief Influence Career Choices? (The Dan Smolen Podcast) [Podcast]

In this episode, Hope Edelman, author of Motherless Daughters, discusses how the pandemic changed bereavement (at 14:32) and shares insight on how grief can influence career choices that lead to meaningful work (at 27:41).

How a health scare, bereavement or grief impacts career change (and avoid making rash decisions) (midlife unstuck) [Blog]

A blog post by career change expert Lucia Knight shares top considerations for a career re-think after an emotionally turbulent stage.

Grieving a job loss
Job Loss and Unemployment Stress (HelpGuide) [Article]

Allowing room for grief is a first step for coping with job loss stress, maintaining spirits and finding a renewed sense of purpose.

Getting closure: how to mourn the end of a job (Welcome to the Jungle) [Article]

Cécile Pichon, a career transitions coach and psychologist in France, shares her insights to help people who are going through difficult professional transitions.

Grieving a job loss & split realities (Career Therapy) [Podcast]

An in-depth discussion with author Shelby Forsythia on the importance of processing emotions – whether someone was laid off, fired, furloughed or quit – in healthy ways. It touches on multiple points including practical ways to conquer grief at work (at 19:19) and how COVID-19 exacerbates emotions (at 26:03).

Making Sense of the Future After Losing a Job You Love (Harvard Business Review) [Article]

This article explores the impact that loss of livelihood can have on identities, especially in the context of the pandemic, where many may not return to similar roles or careers they built over years. Three steps on managing emotions and identities are offered as ways to help.

Katrina Rozal Author
Katrina Rozal is a Communication Specialist. She has 10 years of combined experience in producing content for Canadian news media and the British non-profit sector.
Katrina Rozal Author
Katrina Rozal is a Communication Specialist. She has 10 years of combined experience in producing content for Canadian news media and the British non-profit sector.
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