Writen by Josh Greenberg

This article, Job Security in Today's Workplace, is part of AlphaMeasure's compilation, Tales from the Corporate Frontlines. It tells the story of a manager who decides to look for ways to bolster the morale in his company when it crashes after an extensive layoff.

Anonymous Submission

I've worked for the same company for ten years now. At the end of last year, we reorganized, and in the process, over 10% of the workforce was terminated. In the wake of the layoffs, morale hit an all time low. My colleagues in upper management were becoming especially depressed. Every meeting I attended began with a discussion about low morale and productivity, complete with a round table of horror stories to illustrate the nightmare.

Our company couldn't afford to see this happen---we'd just restructured out of financial necessity.

Sick of hearing the horror stories and dire predictions for the company's future, I decided to do a little research; I was sure that I could find at least one solution to the declining morale problem. At the next staff meeting, I'd pass what I learned along to my colleagues. The big question was: What could the company do to heal the hard feelings created by the layoffs and restore a sense of security? Here are some of the answers I found by reading through magazine articles, newspapers, websites, etc.:

* First of all---be honest with our employees. They are smart enough to know that NO employer is going to issue a written guarantee of job security for any length of time. Employers that address the future dishonestly only fuel more feelings of mistrust and insecurity.

* Encourage employees to take advantage of available company sponsored training. A broad based skills set makes them more adaptable to changing conditions and more valuable to the company.

* Empower employees by encouraging individual responsibility. When they feel that they are making a real contribution, employees are more confident and worry less about job security.

* Encourage networking. If by chance the worst does come to pass, employees can build a safety net by keeping in touch with business associates, sales reps, suppliers---all professionals in their field who may become valuable contacts later on.

* Provide a means of record keeping. People rarely update their resumes unless they are forced to use them. Find a way to help employees keep record of new skills mastered, courses, seminars and workshops completed, so that this information is accurate and close at hand if needed.

My colleagues were happy to finally have some answers, and agreed to work with their people to bolster the morale in their departments. Although some of the recommendations seemed harsh, we all saw the reality of the situation--- it's a different kind of workplace----and helping our employees to deal with that reality is the best way we can provide the job security they need.

© 2005 AlphaMeasure, Inc. - All Rights Reserved

This article may be reprinted, provided it is published in its entirety, includes the author bio information, and all links remain active.

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Josh Greenberg is President of AlphaMeasure, Inc.

AlphaMeasure provides organizations of all sizes a powerful web based method for measuring employee satisfaction, determining employee engagement, and increasing employee retention.

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January 6, 2009 at 8:31 AM  

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