Thursday, January 15, 2009

Pink Sucks When It's A Slip

My mom's company is in the midst of major cutbacks. Two days ago, she finally clued me in to the fact she has been on the pink slip list at her job.

Supposedly, her immediate bosses have gone to bat for her. She's been told her name is off the list. But today is the day. She won't feel safe or relax in the least until 5.30 this afternoon. While her bosses have been fighting for her, other people have been fighting for their secretaries. Everyone is freaking out and cleaning out their desks. Waiting for that long march to HR.

In brilliant American fashion, this is how today is being handled. A tap on the shoulder. Come with me please. Fifteen minutes on the cold end of a conference table to digest the legalese of termination paperwork. To sign for a severance package you may or may not understand. To sign away your rights to protest. Tick tock. Tick tock. Then, escorted to your work station of 5, 10, 18 years you are given ten minutes to pack your things. No access to your computer, people staring over your shoulder. You are then walked out by security. You are not allowed to speak with any of your coworkers. No goodbyes. No hugs.

Is there any question as to why Americans are the envy of the world?

My mom is terrified, and I don't blame her. My dad was supposed to retire in April. The past few days have demonstrated her complete lack of mental preparation for being out of a job. I just called her desk, and at least her voice mail is still picking up.

I feel sick.


Bluestreak said...

It's not so much the laying off, ok, it is, but it's also how they do it that's so cold and inhuman.

A Free Man said...

Wow, frighteningly well put. It's scary times back in the Fatherland. Hope your Mom makes it through the day OK!

RiverPoet said...

I am pulling for her. God, I hate layoffs. My son just went through that...

Peace - D

Patois said...

Unbelievably harsh. Inexplicably, unnecessarily harsh. I'm hopeful she makes it through this day unscathed. But just being around it means she's not unscathed.

Not Afraid to Use It said...

Update: My mom's job is safe. She has been reassigned and things are still getting hammered out, but at least she still appears to have a job.

@Bluestreak: I agree. What a nightmare, eh?

@AFM: Her day was stressful, but two margaritas during dinner helped a bit.

@RP: I am so sorry to hear about your son. I hope he finds something quickly.

@Patois: She does work in an information sensitive office, but still. And yeah, she's still pretty shook up about it all.

andbabybmakesthree said...

Just saw the update here, and so glad to hear it! I'm so sorry she has to go through this kind of stress. :(

buddha_girl said...

I didn't get here until today - I am so glad to hear that her job is "safe" for now.

You put things so well - so glaringly well.

Billychic said...

I wish the best for your Mom...the Work Angel of Death hit my company, too...a bunch of people I know got laid off. Somehow, *knocks wood* I dodged the bullet.

It's really, really scary out there.

Gypsy said...

Ugh, gut-wrenching! I'm glad she's safe, though.