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Warren Bennis

Warren Bennis

Warren Bennis is University Professor and Distinguished Professor of Business at the University of Southern California. His newest book is 'Still Surprised: A Memoir of a Life in Leadership.'

Ease the Pain

There is really no "right" way of downsizing. But there are a few ways of easing the pain:

1. Help the victim find a new opening.

2. Continue their health insurance for at least a year.

3. Help prepare the downsized cohort group get prepared -- i.e. provide tuition for a training program where suitable jobs are still available.

4. Provide short-term counseling program for victims and family.

5. Do it with as much respect as possible -- that is, face-to-face discussions with those being laid off. A terrible example is Radio Shack, which reportedly emailed or telephoned its employees to deliver the bad news.

6. For long-term employees, extend benefits and appropriate severance pay to provide time and resources to obtain a new position.

7. Give assurances that the company will welcome them back when conditions improve.

Unfortunately, I don't know of companies that do downsizing "well."

By Warren Bennis

 |  February 9, 2009; 10:20 AM ET
Category:  Economic crisis Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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