Short Time To Live



  • My company's leaders are complaining that there is this super critical issue that supercedes all other issues at all costs, and to address it, we must hire more people.

    My company is simultaneously having layoffs. Not the clear-out-the-dead-wood kind of layoffs, but the we-appologize-for-our-short-sightedness-but-better-you-than-me layoffs. When someone goes, they have support folks bring a cart to the vacated cubicle and strip it to the bare desk, pulling pc, laptop, and phone, and cart it all away. A week or so later, the new person is escorted to the desk, and sits, without computer or phone for 2 weeks until the support folks can cart it all back, reblast it and redo the configurations (programmers have different setups than salesfolks, secretaries, etc). In the mean time, all of the knowledge of the system leaves with the person who got tossed, and head-hunters collect mountains of fees.

    You'd think they'd just leave the stuff at the desk, since it's not likely that a salesperson would be seated in a developer's cube. At the very least, reassign the developers to the critical project.

    Talk about the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.

    *sigh*



  • sounds like you need roaming profiles and groups and such - then whenever someone logs in on the computer, it looks how they like it, it has what they need, etc.  not that they'd listen to someone like me on such a topic, I'd only charge a couple thousand to get it right.



  • Let's put it this way...

    The salary for a new developer is perhaps 10-20k less thenthe one they let go.  The headhunter is getting a nice fee of about 15k.  After one year, the company sees a gain.

    It's all about the bottom feeders.
     



  • I was in the same situation a couple years back, working for a good-sized company in the telecom industry on a VOIP product.  The client's business started tanking right around the time of massive company-wide layoffs, and the project suffered heavy casualties.  I quickly found out that in a company that large, you live or die by your assignment.
    If your managers cared enough, they would help you look for a transfer to another project in the company.  Otherwise you were gone.  The company didn't care about anything beyond their bottom line.

    I was lucky the first time, and was transferred to another project that happened to be hiring.  I lasted another year until that project tanked too.  The second time I wasn't so lucky.



  • I worked for my current company initially as a full time co-op for six months.  I was then kept on part time when I went back to school.  Towards the end of my co-op the company was going on about how good shape it was in.  We picked up a lot of new business as a customer got rid of a competitor and switched their stuff for our stuff.  A couple weeks into my part time work, there was a bunch of lay-offs.  I survived that round because I was cheap.  A couple months later there was a second round of lay-offs that I got caught in.  My manager tried to keep me on, but it was either me or a full time employee that they actually liked (in the previous round, a full timer in my group got laid off instead of me since the other guy was a waste).  Flash foreward several months later and I'm looking for a job and I find out that the company is hiring a whole bunch of people, because d'oh, they let so many people go, that they didn't have enough people to do all the work that needed to be done.  Now they have a lot more people working for the company than they did when i was a co-op.     



  • And the moral of this story?

    Company sponsered retirement plans are a waste of your money; invest on your own.

    And they wonder why our generation has no corporate loyalty.  I'm still waiting for a company that has loyalty to it's employee's. 

    A perfect example of the bottom line always winning is Circuit City, I have since decided to completely deny them my money.



  • @KattMan said:

    A perfect example of the bottom line always winning is Circuit City, I have since decided to completely deny them my money.

    I was wondering when someone would mention that.  I never liked shopping there anyway; I hate being pestered at the door for my receipt after I've already given them my money (getting harder and harder to avoid that these days, though).



  • @KattMan said:

    A perfect example of the bottom line always winning is Circuit City, I have since decided to completely deny them my money.

    Yeah, that was a fascinating story.  Another electronic retail chain I get to avoid (a friend's boycotting Best Buy--they treated her like crap).  I can't wait for the day where every electronics chain gives me a reason not to shop there.


     



  • @Jojosh_the_Pi said:

    @KattMan said:

    A perfect example of the bottom line always winning is Circuit City, I have since decided to completely deny them my money.

    Yeah, that was a fascinating story.  Another electronic retail chain I get to avoid (a friend's boycotting Best Buy--they treated her like crap).  I can't wait for the day where every electronics chain gives me a reason not to shop there.


     

    Someone just being treated bad I can see as an isolated incident.  What CC did was just plain wrong.  Even to the point where they told the ousted employees they could re-apply at the lower wage after 6 months.  Yeah make them the new guy below the new hires.  They should have offered to let them keep the job at the lower wage with no down time, this is what the airlines did to meet their people half way. 



  • There was this one place I worked.  Dates are approximate, as I don't remember the exact details of the history before I joined.

    1975:  Founded by four geniuses.

    1977:  Products quickly become industry standards.  (Many business-page newspaper articles cite the company:  "... according to <genius name> of <this company's name>."

    1981:  CEO and head genius unexpectedly dies of heart attack, at height of company's influence, success and power.

    1982:  Company doing not so well.

    1983:  Company bought by Big Famous Corporation.  Remaining 3 geniuses cash out and leave company.

    1985:  Company hires me as developer.  Oil paintings of deceased CEO are everywhere.  Company already living in the past.

    1986:  Company losing money, so BFC splits it into three separate units.

    1987:  Company still losing money, so BFC merges it back into one unit.

    1988:  Company still losing money, so BFC fires the president and replaces him with Dick Hotshot.  Dick Hotshot splits it into three separate units only crosswise instead of longitudinal.  My boss' boss is in Washington but my boss' boss' boss is in the same building as me.

    1988 a week later:  Dick Hotshot assures us that the company is better than ever.

    1988 a few months later:  First round of layoffs.  Dick Hotshot assures us this will make the company even more successful.

    Two months after that:  Second round of layoffs.  Dick Hotshot is fired.

    The next day:  Dick Hotshot starts work as CEO of Successful Technologies, Inc., an unrelated company in Cambridge.  Wow, he did the job search, went for the interviews and got the position all in one day!

    One week later:  John Goodguy (my boss' boss' boss) calls us all together to tell us that upper management has assured him that there will be no more layoffs.

    The next day:  John Goodguy is laid off.

    1989:  I resign to join John Goodguy's startup company.

     



  • @pauluskc said:

    sounds like you need roaming profiles and groups and such - then whenever someone logs in on the computer, it looks how they like it, it has what they need, etc.  not that they'd listen to someone like me on such a topic, I'd only charge a couple thousand to get it right.

    Amen!



  • @soon-to-die said:

    ...When someone goes, they have support folks bring a cart to the vacated cubicle and strip it to the bare desk, pulling pc, laptop, and phone, and cart it all away. A week or so later, the new person is escorted to the desk, and sits, without computer or phone for 2 weeks until the support folks can cart it all back, reblast it and redo the configurations [...]

    You'd think they'd just leave the stuff at the desk, since it's not likely that a salesperson would be seated in a developer's cube. At the very least, reassign the developers to the critical project.

    The process sir. The process! How could anything get done at all if the processes weren't followed to the letter? Do you know what would happen if you stopped following the rules? Itell you what : things would cease being done properly, people would stop wearing ties and, god forbid, employees would start to take initiatives! Is this really what you want?

    Or maybe you think that you're smarter than the guys who designed the process. Those guys come to a company, asses the situation with just a few bribes of information, propose a process and then leave the company never to be seen or heard again. Do you really feel you are superior to those consultants? Do you know how much they cost?

     You definitely don't have what it takes to be in a management position at a big corp.



  • @soon-to-die said:

    My company's leaders are complaining that there is this super critical issue that supercedes all other issues at all costs, and to address it, we must hire more people.

    My company is simultaneously having layoffs. Not the clear-out-the-dead-wood kind of layoffs, but the we-appologize-for-our-short-sightedness-but-better-you-than-me layoffs. When someone goes, they have support folks bring a cart to the vacated cubicle and strip it to the bare desk, pulling pc, laptop, and phone, and cart it all away. A week or so later, the new person is escorted to the desk, and sits, without computer or phone for 2 weeks until the support folks can cart it all back, reblast it and redo the configurations (programmers have different setups than salesfolks, secretaries, etc). In the mean time, all of the knowledge of the system leaves with the person who got tossed, and head-hunters collect mountains of fees.

    You'd think they'd just leave the stuff at the desk, since it's not likely that a salesperson would be seated in a developer's cube. At the very least, reassign the developers to the critical project.

    Talk about the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.

    *sigh*

    Hmmm... IANAL, but I'm not sure that would be legal here in the UK.

    @Jojosh_the_Pi said:

    @KattMan said:

    A perfect example of the bottom line always winning is Circuit City, I have since decided to completely deny them my money.

    Yeah, that was a fascinating story.  Another electronic retail chain I get to avoid (a friend's boycotting Best Buy--they treated her like crap).  I can't wait for the day where every electronics chain gives me a reason not to shop there.


     

    I suspect that would be somewhat less than legal too...



  • My company is a complete WTF in layoffs as well.

    A couple of years ago Big Corporate Owners decided we had to lose about a third of the staff (about 30 people). I was one of the cut ones. On the last day of our consultation period I was told someone else had resigned the day before so they could keep one person and they wanted to keep me. I demanded another week off to think about it (after already having about 6 weeks at home!) and a pay rise. And I got it, which still suprises me today.

    Fast forward to earlier this year, and we are sold off by Big Corporate Owners (we've always made a loss), and bought by Successful Company Doing The Same Thing Run By One Of Our Old Directors.

    Naturally, they start laying people off. One girl had just had a job title change, but was still doing 95% of her old role. They told her they didn't need someone doing this new role, but rather needed someone doing her old role - that she still did - and offered her the chance to stay and do it - for a 30% reduction in salary...

    Three months later, they still haevn't sorted out our pensions (lots of guys lost their final salary schemes), or other benefits, or new contracts. The guys laid off were going to court to get proper terms (one guy was here for 40 years. His payoff? 2 months salary!)

    I've lived through about 10 rounds of redundancies now in this place... oh the fun.
     



  • Just ditch the company, why would you want to stay in a place that plays musical chairs with its employees?



  • I was thinking seriously about bailing from a company I'd been at for a while.  A good friend of mine suggested I come interview at the place she left for.  They were having a job fair, after all.  She got laid off the week after the job fair.  She was the new guy, but still not a place I would have wanted to go after that, even if they'd offered.



  • @poochner said:

    She was the new guy, but still not a place I would have wanted to go after that, even if they'd offered.

    I completely agree; sex changes should not be fireable offenses



  • I never really consider "guy" to be gender-specific, but a couple couple of quick searches say it is when it's singular, and gender-neutral when plural.  You're right, I'm wrong.  Please, forgive me.  I'm sure it'll happen again in an informal setting such as this.

     And I do agree about the sex changes, too.  I'd seriously question working for a company that fired somebody that went through that.  As if they don't have enough things to worry about.
     



  • 'twas merely a meta-irony joke



  • @webzter said:

    I completely agree; sex changes should not be fireable offenses


    Except that sometimes they are



  • @poochner said:

    I never really consider "guy" to be gender-specific, but a couple couple of quick searches say it is when it's singular, and gender-neutral when plural. 

    It's crap like this that makes me steer clear of the term "guy(s)" all together.  

    Ah, modern life. I long for the days before "pants suits." And personally, I'd like to wear a fedora, but in today's world it would be seen as an eccentricity. 



  • @R.Flowers said:

    And personally, I'd like to wear a fedora, but in today's world it would be seen as an eccentricity. 

    Not to mention - do you have any idea how hard they are to obtain? Nobody sells good hats any more. 


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