Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Company Downsizing Guide for Managers. Downsize the Right Way to avoid Litigation, Low Performance and Employee Morale, Reputation Decline.

During current economic downturn, many companies are fighting for survival with dwindling revenues and demands. Consumer confidence and industrial output showed sign of weakness on many sectors. Inevitably, some companies are forced to downsize to stay afloat. But How can company downsize the RIGHT WAY?

In preparation for company downsizing, the following checklist may help:
Have you:
1. Reviewed the business plan and clarified our needs and goals?
2. Identified other ways to reduce costs and achieve our goals?
3. Identified the human resources we need in order to reach our business plan goals and objectives?
4. Identified the kinds and numbers of positions that should be eliminated?
5. Established criteria for deciding which positions will be eliminated?
6. Followed the criteria consistently throughout the entire organization?
7. Identified the people whose jobs will be eliminated?
8. Conducted a detailed analysis of our workplace both before and after the proposed downsizing by age, sex, ethnic origin, years of service, and any other categories?
9. Found any inconsistencies and taken corrective actions?
10. Reviewed existing severance policy and made any changes to enhance the assistance people will receive?
11. Decided what works best in our workplace: tell everyone in small groups, individually, or one large group? (for both exiting and remaining people)
12. Designated one person to deal with the media and informed all managers to refer media calls to that person?
13. Provided media training for the designated media contact?
14. Set a date for announcing the downsizing and cleared calendars of all people involved?
15. Trained people on how to conduct a downsizing notification meeting?
16. Arranged to have individual letters prepared to distribute at the notification meeting(s)?
17. Scheduled the rooms needed to conduct the downsizing notification meetings?
18. Selected a job transition organization to provide transition assistance?
19. Scheduled the transition organization so that they can be on-site and begin their work the same day?
20. Coached everyone involved in notifying employees of the downsizing in how to physically and mentally prepare, such as getting extra sleep, extra exercise, healthy nutrition, and moderate alcohol and caffeine intake?
21. Made sure that key leaders and managers understand the power of being on-site and walking around, ready to listen to anyone who has a question or wants to make a comment?
22. Reviewed calendars to ensure that no leader will be out of the office five to ten days after the announcement, particularly for vacation or conferences?
23. Determined how any employees—both those who are exiting and those who are remaining—who might be on vacation or home ill will be informed of the downsizing?
24. Identified ways to stay in touch with downsized people, in case we need some people back at a later time?
25. Reviewed this list in detail and honestly answered each question?



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