Friday, November 11, 2011

Why Some Get Laid Off

layoff_noticeBefore I begin a series on leadership I want to share an example of why some people get laid off

I just wanted to share a story that exemplifies why some people lose their jobs when times get tough. I will share the story and let you draw your own conclusions.

At one point, my assistant’s husband worked as vice president for a major military contract company. The down economy, the war winding down, and military budget cuts were coming. The company, anticipating reduced revenues, sent instructions that he needed to reduce his workforce by 3,000.

He analyzed his options and devised the following strategy. He would let go all of the employees who:

  1. Could not do what they said they could do when they were hired
  2. Did not stay on task at work, but spent more time talking to co-workers
  3. Came in late to work, took too long on lunch, and left work early

He identified 5,000 people on his staff who met this criteria and laid them off. Interestingly, productivity increased when he let them go in spite of the reduced staff.

I’m not saying that all people who get laid off meet this criteria. Others reasons exist. However, I think this story gives pause to consider our approach to work. I recently heard a too common story. A certain employee felt wonderful that he had found a job where he could put in the minimum requirement and never lose his job.

Once again, I will just share the story and let you draw your own conclusions. Good luck on your work ethic.

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