I was laid off recently by a mortgage bank here in Southern California. Times are tough in the mortgage business, as you may have heard.
First, some tips on how not to do a layoff:
- Call the layoff a “rightsizing,” which suggests that there was something “wrong” with the people who were let go. (Actually, the company I worked for has already announced another “rightsizing” in which 1,000 more people will be laid off over the next few months. They just can’t get these “rightsizings” right.)
- Overnight a layoff information packet, including a 20-page severance agreement, to the home of laid-off employees, asking them to sign and return it via the enclosed UPS envelope.
- Don’t enclose the UPS envelope.
- The next day, overnight a second packet to employees’ homes, containing the UPS envelope and a letter correcting phone numbers, email addresses and other misinformation in the previous day’s packet.
- Include an obvious misspelling or two in the letter — ideally, something that would slip past a spell checker but be caught easily by anyone who bothered to proofread it. Suggestion: “If you have nay questions . . .”
Unemployed people like to see the kind of flamboyant incompetence that still draws a paycheck.
Want to hire me?
Here’s what I’m good at:
- Software development
- Project management
- Training, coaching and mentoring