What do you mean this office is closing and I'm laid off?
I have a friend who was recently told that they are being laid-off because their office is closing. The company had been denying that this office was closing for a looooooong time! In fact, they continued to deny the office was closing up until they made the announcement that they were indeed, closing this office. Can you believe that?!
Now, my friend will be out of a job VERY soon! It made me think about the idea of company loyalty. Aren’t companies always asking their employees to be loyal? Is company loyalty only a one way street? Should the company have prepared its employees for the impending doom?
Having been in a situation like this before, I made the choice to cover my own ass and find something else. This is not a decision to be made lightly, but if you can't afford to be out of work, you have to do what's in your own best interests. I can't pay my rent with company loyalty.
My friend however, believed them and stayed. Their reward for being loyal, a small and I do mean small severance and hopefully unemployment cash.
In my case, the writing was on the wall. Articles I found in the Wall Street Journal that included statements from higher ups in the company that talked about "changes" that needed to be made, left me feeling uneasy. Entire departments being "transferred" to other offices in other states. Changes in the commission structure geared towards maximizing sales while paying less to the employees. The obvious need to hire more people but the refusal to do so.
Through all of this, they denied they were closing. They went to great lengths to calm the rumors that we would be out of jobs in the near future. I stopped asking about it myself because I hate it when people lie to me, especially directly to my face. So, I didn't see the need in forcing them to do that by asking.
I feel great about the choice I made, but I feel bad for my friend. The recovering economy doesn't seem to be going as well as it's portrayed in the news. Not as far as I can tell anyway. The prospect of being able to easily find another job is not obvious to me. How will they make it? I never told my friend that jumping ship seemed like a good idea. Not even as a suggestion.
I saw the water pouring slowly and quietly over the sides of the boat but somehow collecting quickly. Quickly enough for me to know that I should grab my life jacket and put it on tightly. Luckily, I was able to make it on to another boat.
The part I feel the worst about, is that I waited until I was safely on the shore before I waved goodbye. Hopefully, my friend will find another boat too before the current boat sinks completely. But I'm gonna loan them my life jacket just in case they don't.
So now, I have to ask, how far does your company loyalty go?
Have a great day at work today, and please don't do anything that will get you fired and/or arrested!
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