RE: You will be what?

Subject: RE: You will be what?
From: "Miller, Alan" <Alan -dot- Miller -at- prometric -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 30 Aug 2002 14:51:06 -0400


During my career, I've been bought, sold, gobbled up, up sized, down sized, spun off, spun up, pi$$ed off, pi$$ed on, dumped on, and just plain .... Business is like that. These things usually follow a pattern. The first changes are in the executive suite. Your new owners will replace the CFO with their guy. A short period of quiet follows while the new owners try to figure out your company's finances and policies. Expect to see a few golden parachutes blossom as the timid and guilty consciences decipher what the finger is etching on the wall. Soon will follow the first "reorganization to realign with the goals and objectives of <onwer's name>." Usually this involves shedding the highest cost and lowest performing segments of the business. Be careful, a lot of political payback occurs during this, enemies axe and get axed. Keep your options open and be ready to move on. It doesn't hurt to scout around the company and align yourself with a profitable product/project team. If you need samples for your portfolio, make sure you have them soonest. When the "reorganization" happens, the victims may not have the opportunity to do more than remove their personal items and be escorted out the door.

It'll take about a year, but the CEO will eventually "leave to pursue other opportunities outside <new company name>." The new CEO will spend the next few weeks/months making a few token changes in the executive suite and analyzing the organization and business. Stand by for the second "reorganization." This one will be ... well, to paraphrase Stalin: when one person looses his job, it's a tragedy; a million, it's a statistic. It's no fun being a statistic. If you survive this one, the rest will be much easier.

Survival is a matter of keeping out of internanl political squabbles, making yourself visible, establishing a reputation for professionalism, demonstrating a willingness to do more than just your job, and being a team player. Piece of cake, right? Look over your last performance evaluation. Note the areas that management values and the criteria that they use to judge their employees. Look at how you have been rated in those areas. Don't be defensive, keep it objective. Write down what you think you have to do to improve to the top level (and not just in the areas where you were judged lacking). Set priorities from the most valued by management (in your estimation) to lowest (hint: anything that makes or saves money should be at the top). Start at the top and work on one each week (one a month is better, but time is short). Keep your resume up to date and ready to publish.

But then, I could be wrong. ;-{)

Al Miller
"Chief Documentation Curmudgeon"
Prometric®, a part of the Thomson Corporation
Baltimore, Maryland

-----Original Message-----
From: Anonymous [mailto:anonfwd -at- raycomm -dot- com]
Sent: Fri 8/30/2002 10:37 AM
Subject: FWD: You will be what?

Forwarded anonymously on request. Please reply to the
list if you want the original poster to see your message. EJR

My company is about to merge with another, in a relationship that is not
clear to those of us in the trenches. We've had multiple layoffs, the
most recent one seemingly an effort to trim certain portions of our
company to make it a better fit with our new counterpart. The event is
not being publicized yet, and management is being very tight-lipped about
exactly what's about to happen. So we don't know if we're being bought,
or simply merging. Or maybe even absorbing the other company, using their
money and our name, with some managemental musical chairs going on behind
the scenes.

Whatever happens, I would assume that upon the two companies joining,
there will be some shaking out, and elimination of redundant positions.
If any of you have been in this situation, I'd be interested to hear your
experience, and perhaps your hindsight. Are there things you can do to
try to enhance your job security? Are there things you wish you had
handled differently?

The most obvious issue for me is to find out exactly who my boss is (or
bosses), but I'm sure there are a number of less obvious issues that will
arise. I'd appreciate any input from anybody who has watched uneasily as
the Borg cube loomed closer to their company. Thanks!

Forwarded anonymously on request. Please reply to the
list if you want the original poster to see your message. EJR

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