Surviving a Resource Action

Resource ActionI have two clients who are surviving a resource action from a major employer. One had her position eliminated, and one was moved to a new position within the organization. Lots of similar emotions for both of them!

They are both relieved that the long-awaited resource action has happened. Weeks ago, the company announced that the changes were coming, so it became like working in a intensive care ward. Everyone was waiting to see who would die…I mean, get laid off, and who would recover…keep their jobs.

Grief and Sorrow

There was grief and sorrow for both of them.

My client, who was adversely effected by the resource action, wondered “why was I laid off when there were others less worthy could have been?”

My client that survived the resource actionwondered “why was I selected to stay when there were more worthy people who were laid off?”

Some of it was being in the wrong place at the wrong time and being in the right place at the right time.

Who is better off?

In this case, I believe it is my client who was adversely effected by the resource action – i.e. laid off!

WOW really?

This was the third resource action that she had experienced, and the second where she was actually laid off. After the first resource action she experienced, she found a new position at the last moment. She knows what to do!

  • Visited her financial adviser to get the facts. She discovered was she was in good shape and could go two years without working.
  • Visited an employment lawyer. She had a number concerns about how her retirement was being handled. It felt good that she was covering all of the bases.
  • Applied for another credit card. When you are out of work, cash is king. Having additional credit lines, even if you do not use or need them, is valuable.
  • Set up an L.L.C. or Limited Liability Corporation. I have told her I do not want her to work full time again this year. She needs to recover from the stress of working in a toxic work environment. Having an L.L.C. allows her to perform freelance work and write off equipment purchases (new computer) that she would have bought anyway. This also allows her to date companies where she might want to work.

Who is worse off?

In my humble opinion, those left behind are often the worse off. Workloads do not decrease, but are spread across fewer people.

Will this be the last resource action? NO!

In 2003, I worked for Agere Systems, a spin off from Lucent. We had small resource actions just about every month. I called this the Chinese Water Torture of resource actions—drip…drip…drip… I was on one of the teams that ranked employees. UGH! That is something I never want to experience again.

I volunteered for a resource action at the end of 2003. I have never regretted that decision.

She is now motivated not to wait for the next resource action. She knows that she is living on borrowed time and needs to move to her next position on her own schedule and not that of her employer.

Everyone is affected by a resource action. Some are more affected than others, and they may not realize it at the time.

Have you been affected by a resource action?

Who was worse off? Those who were laid off or those who stayed?