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Ron Taylor
04-23-2003, 11:15 PM
Upon reporting for work this morning, after 15 years with the company, the boss informed me that I am being retired. No prior notice, just, " today is your last day".

No consolation, but they let 32 others go as well. The economy, 4/11, construction industry in the slumps, all of the usual reasons.

The good part of it is that I was aching to retire anyhow, but my pride would have rather it be my decision. I have resources and several options... most, if not all of the other 32 don't. They will have to find something quickly.

And with my longevity, they gave me a substantial severance package. Most of the others didn't get that either.

I'll probably be posting less (I hear that sigh of relief), cuz now I won't have time to play on the computer.. too busy making sawdust.

Garrett Lambert
04-23-2003, 11:19 PM
Soon you'll be wondering where you found time to go to work.

Enjoy.

Cheers, Garrett

Bill Esposito
04-23-2003, 11:21 PM
Ron,

Sometimes forced change is the only way we are able to take the risk and often it's the best thing that can happen to us.

Good Luck and post lots of pics of your projects :)

Tom Sweeney
04-23-2003, 11:40 PM
I think it is inexcusable for a company to call a guy like you in & say today is your last day - after 15 years :mad:

Now if you stole the payroll or something that's another matter entirely ;)

However it sounds like this might actually be a silver lining deal. Since you were thinking of retiring anyway & it sounds like you can - CONGRATS!!! Have fun making sawdust - but don't be a stranger.

Lee Schierer
04-24-2003, 1:44 PM
Having been on teh other side of the table, I can assure no one on the other side enjoys what they have to do. Many times the decision is made way above their level. I personally agonize over any layoff I have to make. I go to the lengths of my ability and authority to retain people. Sometimes there just isn't any other way for the good of the Company and the majority of employees.

Having everyone take a pay cut to keep from laying off a few doesn't work either instead of a few unhappy people, everyone is unhappy. Been there done that, won't do it again.

I've seen it from both sides. Good luck on your retirement and enjoy the severance package you received. Remember you were compensated for every day you did work for them, they really owe you nothing.

Ian Barley
04-24-2003, 2:35 PM
Having been in Lee's position and Ron's too there is no easy glib way to deal with the human effects of these kind of actions. - Heck - I even once had to make the decision to make myself redundant.

Ron - You sound like you are well placed to make good use of the new opportunity. I sympathise with your wish to the main agent in the change in your life but can only say that as of tomorrow you are. Good luck and work safe.

Regards

Ed Falis
04-24-2003, 2:46 PM
Yep, happened to me about three years ago, after 16 years at a company that I helped found. "We're shutting the office down - see ya'".

Found a new job in 2 weeks, with a much better environment (less Dilbert-world). Sometimes these changes are for the good. I've been on both sides of it, too, but there are smart ways and dumb ways to do it.

Best wishes on ya' Ron.

- Ed

John Piwaron
04-24-2003, 2:55 PM
It's a shock isn't it? Something like that has happened to me, although that was long time ago. I couldn't retire. Eventually another job came along.

It's great you've got the financial resources to retire. Enjoy it. Life's short. I hope the other people affect find new places to go soon.

Jim Becker
04-24-2003, 4:03 PM
Originally posted by Ian Barley
Having been in Lee's position and Ron's too there is no easy glib way to deal with the human effects of these kind of actions. - Heck - I even once had to make the decision to make myself redundant

Yea, I've been in that position, too a number of times. No matter what the reason, letting someone go is a major mental bummer.

I'm glad that Ron is in the position to take charge of things; many folks are not. I have former co-workers who have been "out" for over a year with no real prospects. One is selling cars just to get by and feed his three kids and spouse--and these are folks who are highly qualified and skilled technical folks.

Best wishes to you, Ron! Enjoy your "next career" doing what you enjoy.

Tom Sweeney
04-24-2003, 4:22 PM
>>>>From a different perspective
Having been on teh other side of the table, I can assure no one on the other side enjoys what they have to do. Many times the decision is made way above their level. <<<<

The problem I have is that after 15 years they tell you today is your last day! I usually come down on the side of the business & business owners - but there is no excuse for calling someone into an office, that has done nothing wrong, & telling them to clean out their desk that same day. The reality in today's enviroment is that a 2 week or so notice probably would not matter as a practical fact - but it is still a better way to handle it. I seriously doubt that upper management didn't see this coming 2 weeks ago.

I've never been through this & have no axe to grind except that there is right & there is wrong - & this is wrong IMHO.

Just my 2 worth.

Ed Falis
04-24-2003, 4:36 PM
I'm with you, Tom. It's wrong to do it that way (again, I have been a manager laying people off - even "dangerous" people). The attitude seems to be one of extreme adversarialness: the former employee is now a potential source of damage to the company, and should be removed as quickly as possible before he retaliates.

It just tells more about the corporate mindset than one really wants to know.

- Ed

Ron Taylor
04-24-2003, 8:04 PM
that realy upset me.

First, one of the others was a young woman who I had worked with on several projects. There has never been a better employee. Her husband worked for the company also, but he working in the plant. They layed him off last week. And they have a nine month old child, their first. Her layoff REALLY got to me.

The second was that when I got back to my desk to clean it out, my computer was locked. That hurt. But in retrospect, I suppose I can understand their thoughts. As the person that designed and wrote a great deal of their software, I would be in a position to do some real damage. Nevertheless, after fifteen years, it hurt to be treated like a common criminal.

Today was fun though... layed around in bed till 6:30 or so, then made myself a cup of coffee and went out to the shop. Made some sawdust and contemplated the future. I'm going to enjoy this... ;)

Jim Becker
04-24-2003, 8:10 PM
Originally posted by Ron Taylor
that realy upset me.

First, one of the others was a young woman who I had worked with on several projects. There has never been a better employee. Her husband worked for the company also, but he working in the plant. They layed him off last week. And they have a nine month old child, their first. Her layoff REALLY got to me.

Wow...that took chuzpah on their part. Sheesh...

Ed Falis
04-24-2003, 8:22 PM
Jim.

Nothing personal, but I'm surpized you find it outrageous, This is standard operating procedure.

I really am not sure whether this american way is better or worse than the european where it's nearly impossible to lay off dead wood.

But I've seen a lot of people who have given of their lives get screwed. A lot of us have been in the situation of having to lay people off. There's nothing wrong with that in itself - it's pragmatics. Except when those layoffs are due to managerial irresponsibility. I'd like to be able to say that such irresponsibility wasn't the usual cause, but in my 30+ years in business, I'd be lying to assert that case.

- Ed

Jim Becker
04-24-2003, 9:09 PM
Originally posted by Ed Falis
Jim.

Nothing personal, but I'm surpized you find it outrageous, This is standard operating procedure.

My appoligies if I appeared this to be "outragious". I'm pretty familiar with how normal it is. What I was trying to express was something akin to deep disappointment at such upheaval in one family. But it's also one of the dangers for both folks in a family unit working for the same company. (Been there...had it happen, too)

Bobby Hatfield
04-24-2003, 9:54 PM
To all who may be miffed at being told they are terminated, try my experience with Kodak in the early 80's, one at a time each person is told to follow me and is escorted to the head supervisor's office by your supervisor, to be told you are fired and then escorted every step of the way out of the plant, even to the locker room to change back into your civilian cloths, this was only a reduction in force, talk about cold.

Ed Falis
04-24-2003, 10:09 PM
Jim,

Don't think I took you the wrong way (or at least hope I didn't). This is delicate stuff, because it gets into politics, and when one of us gets touched by it, as we inevitably do, our beliefs about loyalty and how things work get thrown into question.

It's always a bad thing to suddenly get thrown into change; but it's always potentially a good thing too, since we just might discover more for ourselves and our families.

- Ed

Jim Becker
04-24-2003, 10:11 PM
Bobby Hatfield wrote:

To all who may be miffed at being told they are terminated, try my experience with Kodak

There was an article in USAToday this week about a "reunion" of former Proctor and Gamble folks who were left go over the years...many of them became movers and shakers in the business world. Apparently P&G was a "fire and escort" type of operation all along.

Ed Falis
04-24-2003, 10:15 PM
Yeah, Bobby, I know exactly what you mean.

The reason I've been shouting here is that I've seen too many people who are a lot like what I think the folks on this board are like, work their butts off and make sacrifices for the common good of their companies and such, only to be blown off when things get tough.

We all know that losing a job because of circumstance is a possibility. But none of us feels we should be treated like dirt after putting in, when it happens. When I had to fire someone or lay one off, I always tried to have respect and do what I could for the person. It's the nasty attitude that shows up much too often that gets me.

- Ed

Bobby Hatfield
04-24-2003, 10:54 PM
I am glad I was chosen to be fired, some workers who stayed are on disibility with rispitory ailments, waiting to die. I think we were escorted out of the plant because they were afraid we would blow the place up (Chemical Plant), because of the politics in who was fired, they kept the politicians and went on overtime 12 hour shifts for months, cause the politicians wouldn't work and couldn't keep it running, the few good workers who did the work suffered.

Rob Sandow
04-25-2003, 2:36 PM
I've had to be the guy on the other side of the desk on occasion, and I'll tell you that this is really the only way it's done any more. From a company perspective it has to be this way. Usually, they want you to leave right away, even if you continue to be on the payroll for some time afterward or receive a severance payment in lieu of notice. The reasons are many. No company wants a person who is unhappy with the company, and who has no official duties, hanging around to spread discontent like the plague just so he can collect his final paycheck in 2 weeks. They would rather you stay home and they'll mail it to you. Not saying that everyone would be like that, but many will, so why take chances. Also, it saves the laid off employee the embarrassment of having to face co-workers for 2 weeks. He can always get together with the ones he likes outside of work. As others mentioned, there are also security factors like access to systems and confidential data that they would not want tampered with or ending up in the hands of competitors.

Enjoy your retirement and be thankful you were in a position to do it.

Rob

Mike Hanna
04-26-2003, 12:36 AM
I too was laid off and at the time it was scary with a wife
and five kids and I the sole bread winner. But it turned
out to be the blessing in disguise.
I found a better job that was just what I had been looking
for. I stayed there 21 yrs until I retired. As has been
said after you have been retired for a while you begin
to wonder where did I find the time to work. The only drawback
is what my wife says " I married you for better or worse but not
for lunch" Just kidding I think hmmmmmmmm

Gary Bindel
04-28-2003, 11:41 AM
Sorry to hear of how it happened. Where I work was bought by Philips about 18 months ago. Since that time, we have seen a series of layoffs. However, to their credit, whenever possible, those affected were given as much advance notice as possible, as much as eight months. In the few instances where no notice was given, the individuals were given two weeks additional pay in lieu of the advance notice. They also have been giving three months health coverage. All in all, pretty decent on their part. I am expecting to get it around July as the division I support was sold off. I am hoping to get a job with the new outfit. Best option for me is to get laid off so I can collect the 26 weeks of severance and get the job with new outfit. It would help boost the retirement fund so maybe I could retire a little earlier.