Experts debunk viral TikTok videos about how companies reveal layoffs


TikTok users are spreading misinformation about the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, a labor law that was designed to help workers find new jobs before losing their current positions. The law, passed in 1988, requires most companies with 100 or more employees to officially disclose certain layoffs 60 days in advance. 

Some TikTokers have been promoting the WARN Act as a way to see layoffs before they happen, but legal experts caution that the law is complex and not every layoff qualifies for its protections. 

Additionally, many companies would notify employees before filing a WARN notice, and if the layoff is large enough to require notice, it's likely to be reported in the news. While the WARN Act promotes corporate transparency, experts caution that it's not a secret weapon for employees to get ahead of their employers' plans.

Gallop’s State of the Global Workplace 2022 Report found that many people feel emotionally detached or unhappy at work, with post-pandemic life only exacerbating this issue. To combat this, individuals can utilize design thinking to restructure their careers and become more engaged at work. Design thinking is an iterative way to problem-solve, often used by product designers, which focuses on trying new things and iterating rather than extensive thinking and planning. 

To apply design thinking to your career, start by empathizing with yourself and identifying your strengths and sources of dissatisfaction. Define the challenge you are facing, whether it's reframing your current job or exploring new opportunities. Generate ideas without judgment and prototype simple ways to explore your interests. Finally, experiment and test viable concepts to learn and refine your ideas.

For example, a client feeling unhappy in her museum job used design thinking to explore her interest in event planning, eventually gaining more engagement at work through a six-week evening event series she created. By taking small incremental steps, individuals can make big changes in their whole lives and find greater fulfillment at work.

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