Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Something's a little 'off'....

Things around the workplace these days are feeling a little 'off' and it's no fun at all.
It's not an uneasy, "There are layoffs coming!" feeling (although there probably are, but not until March or closer to the end of the 1st quarter) it's just a general unhappiness and 'over it' feeling that everyone seems to share.

In the past couple of months, all of us in the office survived a round of layoffs (the first week in December) and then a couple of weeks after that, we were informed that as of 12/27 we would be required to work more hours each week, without any sort of pay increase to make up for it.

So, as you can imagine, the morale around here is pretty darn low.

To add to the misery, all the 'powers that be' seem to have the attitude that "If you don't like it - find another job!" - yeah....good luck with that.
Most of my co-workers have been with the company for a long time, and have been recently reminiscing about the 'good old days' when the upper management was nice and cared about the team. There were after-work gatherings and lots of fun to be had....and yes, all the work still got done! Recent changes in management (around the time I officially joined the company) have put an end to all that, implemented lots of changes, and due to all of that, the overall feeling is not a positive one.
At first (keeping in mind that I was still new) I thought it was that people were just having trouble getting used to all the changes being made - but over time I've come to realize that it's way more than that.
The people who are now running the show are not the type of people I want to work with, for, or around....and the work I'm doing (or will be doing) is not the kind of work I want to be doing.

Part of me is pissed, because I truly believe their goal is to get rid of as many people as possible -those who don't want to follow along and play the way they want to play, so I feel like in a way, I'm letting them win. However, a bigger part of me (watch it!!!) is coming to realize that life is way too short for me to be waking up each day and going to a job that makes me completely miserable.

It's time to get the ball rolling....


Nik_TheGreek said...

That really must suck... You can't really be proactive and productive in an environment like that. Have you considered finding something else?

Cubby said...

Good luck with your search. In the meantime, do play their game. Yes, I said "do".

I've seen this so many times, when management needs to make cuts. Somehow they become blind and can no longer distinguish a good employee from a bad one. They make their layoff decisions based on personal feelings rather than value to the team. They keep the ones they like and terminate the ones they either don't like or have no personal association with.

So I'll urge you to identify who the decision makers are and build personal relationships with them. Does this mean ass-kissing? If that's what it takes, then yes. And keep looking for a new job.

Larry, aka The Kid and The Old Goat said...

Man, I am sorry to hear you are going through this. I've been there almost a decade ago now. Not pleasant, but the world won't end.

Maybe being new you will get a pass. Where i was what counted wasn't ability or anything else, just cost. They booted the expensive people and kept the inexpensive regardless of true worth.

Good luck to you.


Ron said...

An all too familiar scenario my friend. I've been there and experienced what you're going through now several times in my former life. I am thankful that I am retired now and don't have to play these games anymore. I do work part-time but it is on my own terms. The scenario you describe is the same one that is used over and over again to cause the first wave of reductions.....employees will get so demoralized and disgusted with the new regime and rules they will quit and seek other employment. This is the Harvard Business School playbook for reducing the workforce cheaply. They don't have to pay you severance or unemployment. Thos who survive the "first round" then are subjected to even harsher and more impersonal methods and they will quit too. Those who are left, zombies, will probably have half their number "right-sized." A few "lucky" employees will be left with a company that is no longer the same company that you originally were hired to work for. This is their game plan. It's been working for them for a generation now. It is a win-win for management. Not to further demoralize you, but in the end you're screwed.
I am going to forward your blog to two of my peers (both in banking as I was) for their reading. Sometimes it assuages the pain of being discarded after many years of employment when you learn of others who are going through the same treatment. Then again, maybe not. There is no way around it, this is the new business model. I wish you the best and remember.....don't let the bastards get you down.

Ron said...

By the way, I see one of my friends/peers (Larry the Kid and the Old Goat) has already left a comment on your blog posting.
Take Cubby's advice, look for a job now because even if you are one of the few who are left after the Games, you're not going to be happy. You will eventually leave. Everyone I know who has been through this.....thing....has left. One way or another, they will get you. Look for another job.
Just remember one thing, don't take anything personal. You're just a number (salary) to them. Their decisions on whether you stay or leave has nothing to do with your job performance. It's all about the bottom line.

Jim said...

I'm in the same boat you are. Good luck with the search! And yes, like Larry said; play the game while you're there.

AJohnP said...

Thank you all for the great advice, comments, etc...
As much as it sucks to deal with, it's nice to know it's not 'just me'. :-) xoxo

Kyle said...

John it sounds like they are definitely inducing the situation to save money and cut staff and avoid having to pay severance/unemployment. Aggressively search and keep your eyes open for opportunities, but as others have said play the game. I wouldn't leave until you have other employment options. I am sorry you have to endure such a bad situation, but right now they hold a lot of cards and you don't know what they are or how they will fall.

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