For the last two days, I have been loitering about in Layoffland.
I don’t even really know how to describe it. It’s like the worst alternate reality ever, a combination of a totally ghetto version of Funkytown and It’s a Small World After All.
Make sense? Good.
So, yesterday, Corporate Behemoth let the axe fall on folks on floors 17 through 8. And today was floors 7 through 3. All told, the carnage is estimated to be 200-300 people. And not just nameless, faceless people. They laid off the guy on my floor who is addicted to iced tea and makes the real deal – hot water and tea bags, then ice – several times a day. And the guy a floor up whose wife is very, very pregnant with their second child. And my friend a cube away who I just always want to hug because, well, she’s just that nice.
And the rest of us? We spent the last two days standing around, hoping our phones don’t ring and beckon us to a meeting with a VP and an HR representative. We’re making lists of our fallen comrades. We’re listening to the groans of “Oh, nooo …” when internal gossip channels add someone else to the list. We’re wondering how the hell we’re going to do all the work that still needs to get done. And some of us are wondering what our jobs are now and just who we report to.
It is exhausting.
And without going into too much detail – because Lord help me, I am so sick of only talking about Layoffland for the last however many days – I can tell you one thing: Corporate Behemoth is handling this horribly.
Yes, I have a job and I am fortunate that I don’t have to worry about rationing my yogurt purchases just yet. But it’s becoming more and more apparent that shareholders are more important than anything else, and the people who do the work are viewed as a low-end commodity. And that hurts my heart.
Now, if you’ll excuse me? I’m going to take to my bed.