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Seth Goldman

Seth Goldman

Seth Goldman co-founded Honest Tea in 1998 with Barry Nalebuff, his professor at the Yale School of Management. The Bethesda, Md.-based company has been continuously recognized for its growth and business practices.

Honest Tea, Layoff-Free

We're fortunate in that our 11 years in business, we've never had to have layoffs. In fact, we recently posted 14 open positions, which means a 16 percent increase in the size of our team.

But when we have been in tight situations, my first instinct has always been to expand the duties of team members. It's healthy for people in the office to get out and sell because it helps them appreciate how we pay the bills, and hopefully it give us our own short-term stimulus.

If at some point layoffs were required, I'd want to be honest with the entire team about where we stand. We have a duty to treat the people being laid off as well as we can, especially because the rest of the team will take its cues (about the company's health and its ethics) from the way we treat the people who are leaving. To what extent did we try to support them in their search for a new position? To what extent did we let them separate with respect? It would be sad to lose anyone from our team, but it would be even worse to disappoint the people who we are trying to keep.

By Seth Goldman

 |  February 10, 2009; 9:34 AM ET
Category:  Economic crisis Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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