Re: FWD: Layoff logistics and etiquette

Subject: Re: FWD: Layoff logistics and etiquette
From: "Dana Worley" <dana -at- campbellsci -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2001 13:40:41 -0600

> This makes me wonder - what have the rest of you experienced in
> the wonderful age of layoffs? Any particularly smooth mass firings?
> Any unnecessarily grueling head-chopping? Any suggestions for how
> to improve the process, or at least make the process more
> endurable?

I have never been laid off, but I worked as an assistant to the
president in a company that had several layoffs. When I started we
had 38 employees; a few years later we had 78, along with a new
building, new development projects, etc. The company was not
able to handle the rapid growth.

Essentially, people were called into their supervisors' offices on a
Friday, handed an explanation and a termination slip, and escorted
out the door. This isn't the best way to handle layoffs, but it's
probably not the worst.

If you are laid off, the most important thing to remember is -- don't
take it personally. I sat through many meetings with department
heads while they discussed who would/would not keep their jobs.
And bottom line? They were clueless -- they had no idea who
*really* did the work and who was just dead weight. I was more in
touch with what was going on and was able to put in my two cents
worth -- they even listened sometimes. But sometimes, it came
down to a matter of numbers -- "We have 45 employees and our
budgets will only support 35." In those instances, even the "good
guys" had to be let go.

I like the idea of a group meeting, with individual meetings to
discuss severance afterwards. Though it is impersonal, it helps to
affirm that you're not being laid off because you are a "bad person".

Dana W.

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