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Subject:RE: deer in the headlights (corporate anorexia) From:"Thomas Eagles" <tekwriter -at- sympatico -dot- ca> To:"TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Fri, 22 Feb 2002 02:45:57 -0500
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Suzi Magill [mailto:SMagill -at- adaytum -dot- com]
> Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2002 3:04 PM
> Subject: RE: deer in the headlights
> I've got one better for you. We had layoffs on a Wednesday so
> now every Wednesday when one of the managers asks to see us,
> we all turn 3 shades of green and can barely utter a decent
> string of words. Hopefully, this will end soon as it has been
> over 4 months since Black Wednesday...
Ugh. Don't get me started...
At one company I worked at which will remain unnamed (H/O in Texas -
logistics software company with a two-character name, which is slowly
moving its key staff to India in an effort to pay slave wages and take
all the work out of North America... But then again, their founder and
CEO is from India, so if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck...
Anyhoooo...!), we used to call it Black Payday, because it was on or
near payday that it always happened.
"Can I see you in my office for a few minutes? Thanks," he'd say in that
boss's voice straight out of the movie Office Space. Such a soft,
squishy, California-like tone. Even though he was from another part of
the World (but not India).
When the call would come, you'd greet the boss on the phone, using his
name loudly enough so everyone around you could hear. Then you would
say, "I'll be right there. Should I bring anything?" Of course, the
answer was, "No."
Everyone else *knew* why you were going to the office. "Close the door,
please." The HR person would be hiding in the corner behind the door,
out of sight until after you closed it. Cue the Dragnet theme. Or
perhaps Logan's Run.
After three rounds of layoffs there, it was finally my turn. We went
from having me (team lead) and three other writers, and were CONSIDERING
a fourth writer (five in total), to having only two writers. And
goodness knows what they plan to do next. I do know that a senior
release manager fancied himself a writer. Foolishly, I insisted on
converting to single-sourcing before I left, so perhaps I contributed to
my own demise. At least the two guys who are left now have a somewhat
manageable workload. I should have doubled the multi-sourcing and
complained constantly about being overworked. Or made up a Dilbert-like
name for a process and demanded additional staff at the risk of mass
suicide to get the work done.
Alas, Corporate Anorexia Strikes Again!
I know what: we'll just keep cutting staff until we die a slow, gruesome
corporate death. Yeah, that's the ticket! I honestly don't know how the
people who do the actual laying off can live with themselves. They're
one step down from the folks who press the button for the lethal
injection. Are they SUCH bad planners that they wrongfully hire and
thoughtlessly fire without regard to its impact on peoples' lives? It
seems so. Or perhaps they are like that famous King of Israel some 2000
years ago: "I wash my hands of this." But that's not true, because
they'd go on these little corporate retreats and when they came back,
suddenly we needed less staff! We needed to acquire other companies so
we could lay off THEIR staff. I know this much: if laying off staff
causes the share price to increase, they'll keep doing it until there is
nobody left to do the work. That should be good for long term profits!
Now's a great time to buy RoboHelp! You'll get SnagIt screen capture
software and a $200 onsite training voucher FREE when you buy RoboHelp
Office or RoboHelp Enterprise. Hurry, this offer expires February 28, 2002. www.ehelp.com/techwr
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