Engagement and the Economic Crisis– Part 1

26 Jan

There’s a number of different directions I could take this blog over the coming weeks, but the “lead story” has to be how employee engagement is being impacted by our current economic crisis.

This crisis is everywhere, literally. I’m standing in line at a local pizza joint. Behind me are several people who appear to know each other. I make a quip about “looks like you’re having a rough day”, to which one of the group says “yea, we just laid 50 people off today. We thought it would be good to get away and figure out what we’re going to do next.” Yikes, nice job of putting your size 13 foot in your mouth– I make my apologies.

I know these decisions are facing many of you. Like the folks at the pizza place, what you do right now as leaders will impact not only your business, but the lives of the employees who work with you.

I can’t tell you that force reductions are what’s needed in your business right now. What I can tell you is that how you treat everyone– those who are let go and those who stay– will have an impact. So ask yourself these questions:

  • Is this really the right thing to do now?
  • Are there other ways we can trim expenses without a force reduction?
  • What can we do to help those who are still with us deal with this trauma?
  • If we must sever staff, what can we do to make sure our actions are done in a professional and dignified manner?

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