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Being Told You are Losing Your Job

How would you feel if one of your children came home and told you they were treated like this?

The other day, I was in conversation with a seasoned H.R. Director, and the topic came up about handling Redundancies. Naturally we swopped stories – stories about redundancies that were well handled and redundancies that were not well handled. I am working with one Company at the moment where the redundancies have been well handled and the commitment of the exiting Staff is quite extraordinary – they are pulling out all the stops to ensure that the handover of their work to another Division (located outside the country) is done properly. My colleague is dealing with a Company at the other end of the spectrum, where an unbelievably bad job was done. The grief, distress and pain of the people affected is huge. This has been seen by the Staff left behind and productivity is now affected.

My H.R. Director friend said ‘Any time I had a difference of opinion with a Line Manager on handling an exit I always asked ‘If one of your children came home and told you they had been handled in this way, Would you be happy?….. If your answer is Yes, then we go ahead. If your answer is No, then we need to re-think how we are doing this.’

In the current environment where there is significant pressure on all our businesses and we have to implement redundancies, my friend the H.R. Director is worth remembering.

Jim Waters

5 May 2010