Monday, June 29, 2020

Blueprint For A Thoughtful And Dignified Layoff

The New Virtual Organization World

It's a New Principled and Civilized World, It's Virtual, and It's Organized

Blueprint for a Thoughtful and Dignified Layoff

Let's face it, layoffs are a fact of life as companies are forced to adapt to events and changes in the global economy and the marketplace.  

As well, much has been written in the past about the best way for organizations to deal with such layoffs.  Therefore, I will avoid the temptation of trying to go down that same rabbit hole.

Instead I propose that your organization adopt a very different and counter intuitive approach:  Make one final investment in your most loyal, high performance employees which is designed to reap significant dividends to your organization for as long as it remains an ongoing concern.

Your Most Loyal, High Performance Employees

The question you will then have to wrestle with is, "What objective criteria should we use in order to fairly and accurately describe our most loyal, high performance employees?"   In which case, a consensus will need to be reached on the definition of "most loyal."  

For example, does "most loyal" mean:
  • Someone who will do whatever it takes: lie, cheat, steal, and whatever else it takes - in order to advance the company's agenda?   
  • Someone who believes in "the ends justify the means" when it comes to creating shareholder value?  
  • Someone who places the company's needs above his own personal, family and community needs - "the real company man"? 
  • Someone who has been instrumental in consistently generating a significant amount of revenues for your organization at the expense of sowing bitterness and division within the ranks?
  • Someone who has been instrumental in consistently generating a significant amount of revenues for your organization at the expense of defrauding your customers and/or causing a significant amount of  (known or undisclosed) harm to the general public?
  • Someone who has been instrumental in consistently generating a significant amount of revenues for your organization at the expense of generating a significant amount of  (justified or malicious) blowback from regulators or nefarious forces?
  • Someone who is firmly ensconced in the grapevine (a master tattletale)  who regularly keeps you informed on the activities of everyone within the upper echelons of your organization?
  • Someone with a lot of influential connections that your company has relied upon in order "to fix things or get things done" when external problems arise?
I asked the foregoing questions for the simple reason that, at one point or another during my 48-year professional career, I have personally encountered all of the above whom I mistakenly thought were "most loyal" to some organization - including my own.    
Yet today, this very minute and second as you read this, I consider them all to have been "most harmful" to their organization and mine.   Today,  my definition of  "most loyal" is someone who is "principled" and subscribes to the supreme a priori ethical codeDo unto others as you would have them do unto you.   That is all! 
And believe it or not, trying to find such individuals in today's day and age is the equivalent of "looking for a needle in a haystack."
As you can see, being "most loyal" is in the eye of the beholder and depends on the time and place and circumstance.    Thus the reason why a consensus is needed in order to decide on the meaning of "most loyal."

This Final Investment 

Investment In the Future
So what is this final investment?   The answer is too simple to grasp but nonetheless here it is:  In addition to your organization's standard employee severance package,  offer them: 

An additional 3-Month Compensation, plus

A fully-paid "Virtual Organization Leadership Executive Training, Assessment and Certification" solution sponsored by your organization.   (It's a 90-calendar day training program.)

Why the additional 3-month compensation.   The additional compensation is designed to cover the length of time that your (to be laid-off) employee will participate in the foregoing fully-paid  Virtual  Organization Leadership Executive Training, Assessment and Certification program.   

During that time period, your employee will no longer have access to any company premises, data and resources;  and will strictly report to their trainer at Virtual Organization Leadership,  the solution provider.

Disbursement method for the additional 3-month compensation.   No different than for any other company employee.  Employee remains on company payroll and is paid in accordance with standard payroll policies, practices and procedures.

The net effect of the additional 3-month compensation is to postpone the effective date of termination as well as the processing and distribution of the Official Employee Severance Package.    Although the employee will no longer gain access to company premises, data and resources during the training period at Virtual Organization Leadership, the compensation will delay the time that the employee can officially apply for and collect  "unemployment benefits."    

For one simple reason:  For the most part, in order to be eligible to collect unemployment benefits, you must be actively looking for work and be available to work, unless you are participating in some state-approved  employment training program.    Therefore, this relieves the soon-to-be laid off  employee from the burden associated with participation in the virtual organization leadership training program.    

What happens if the employee fails to participate in the Virtual Organization Leadership Executive Training, Assessment and Certification program?    Virtual Organization Leadership has a moral and fiduciary  obligation to certify on a weekly basis the attendance of each program participant (who will officially be terminated by their employer at the end of the program) as well as provide a final performance report.  
At which point,  your organization can cease any additional weekly or bi-weekly payroll disbursements; expedite the effective date of termination; and prepare an Official Severance Package for this employee.        
Why not include the entire additional 3-month compensation in the lump-sum employee  severance package and get it over with?   The danger to that approach is that your  (technically) laid-off employee may soon secure new employment much faster than anticipated (e.g., within a couple of days or weeks) and thus have no choice but to walk away from the 90-Day Virtual Organization Leadership training program.
In such a situation, it would be extremely difficult for your organization to initiate or activate any crawl back provision (if any) of the additional 3-month compensation that is included in the lump-sum severance package.   So, why complicate matters?

Lifetime Dividends to Laid-Off Employee

Regardless of the field or industry, here is the precious gift that you have just given to a (technically) laid-off employee:     
An opportunity to become part of a new breed of Virtual Organization Leaders who have been highly trained in all aspects of how to function, operate, thrive, excel, manage and LEAD in both a "Virtual" and  "Virtual Organization" Environment in accordance with the virtual organization management discipline pioneered by its founder since 1997.
Virtual Organization Leaders who will live and breathe in a 100% Virtual Organization Environment and form the backbone of an organization's Virtual Organization Leadership Force operating across the globe and able to respond instantly to any Continuity Of Operations Plan scenario (e.g., Pandemics, Natural Disasters, Ransomware Attacks, Attacks on Critical Virtual and Physical Infrastructures, Terror Attacks on Corporate Personnel, etc.)     
(See Antidote tRansomware Attacks: A Virtual Organization COOP Force :: and :: IYour COOP Strategy Out oDate Or “We’ll Cross That Bridge When WGet  There”?  for details.)       
Virtual Organization Leadershipin partnership with VOMI (Virtual Organization Management Institute) and VOMI Virtual Organization Academy, is the ONLY  organization in the world which offers - and is qualified to offer - such virtual organization leadership training and certification. 
Please note I am not talking about "Remote Worker" training or consulting for remote employees.  It's like trying to compare a kindergarten program with a PhD program or apples with oranges. 

The bottom line is this:   With this training program, you have just introduced your laid-off employees to a World of Virtual Organizations  we are all headed toward, whether we want to or not ::  The New Virtual Organization World.  It's not a matter of if, but when, we will all get there!

In doing so, you have exponentially increased their chances of  finding a Virtual Organization Leadership Executive position with any leading or global organization or government anywhere in the world.   
Moreover, the law of supply and demand says that they will be able to command a Total Annual Compensation Package which far exceeds what they were earning at your organization.
Lifetime Dividends to Your Organization 

Lifetime Dividends to Your Organization
Alright,  now that I have made a very clear and convincing case as to how your laid-off employee benefits from this program, I know you are anxious to figure out how your company benefits from all this altruism.

This "Above and Beyond The Call of Duty" Gesture by Your Organization Will Never Be Forgotten.    For just a few minutes, put yourself in the position of this executive:   
You have given a good 15-20 years of hard work to the company, made quite a few personal sacrifices,  have gone Above and Beyond The Call of Duty for your employer,  and have never wavered in your  devotion to this organization that you have come to consider a second home and family.     
Unfortunately, through no fault of your own, the company is left with no other choice but to let go of some of their most valuablededicated and cherished employees.   
So, like everyone else, there is no denying that it's a traumatic experience, however, you understand that "shit happens" and this is just another challenge that you'll just have to gather the strength to deal with.  And hopefully, the standard Employee Severance Package will help you to make it through some of the emotional roller coaster, rough patches  and uncertainties which are bound to lie ahead. 
But instead of just getting a "going away employment termination" party along with a lot of thank-yous, accolades, some gifts and flowers,  and many well-wishes from a bunch of teary-eyed colleagues, while crying along with them,  and waiting to receive the Standard Employee Severance Package,  your employer decides to surprise you and reciprocate with its very own "Above and Beyond The Call of Duty" gesture.    
On your final day of reporting to the corporate office, you learn that your employer has provided you with this "additional 3-month compensation plus a fully-paid Virtual Organization Leadership Executive Training, Assessment and Certification program" that is designed to exponentially increase your chances of finding executive employment anywhere in the world without having to relocate.    
Moreover,  you discover that such new position would most likely come with a Total Annual Compensation Package which far exceeds what you are now earning. 
Now my question to you is this:   Regardless of where you happen to land a new position, and no matter how long it has been since you have left the company,  how would you feel about your former employer for making this "above and beyond the call of duty" gesture to you?  In other words, how much goodwill will you always have toward your former employer?
Moreover, if your employer had a change of fortune, knowing how hard it is to recruit "great employees" and knowing how expensive it is to "recruit the very best," what is the very first company which would come to mind if someone had ever asked you to recommend a good employer where you could give your all without having any regrets down the road?
Again, if your former employer had a change of fortune and offered you a Virtual Organization Leadership Executive position, and assuming all things are equal, on a scale of 1-10, what is the likelihood that you would strongly consider such opportunity?  
Think about it!  After all, your former employer is the one who introduced you to the world of virtual organizations and paid for your Virtual Organization Leadership Executive training.   
And, last but not least, assuming that your former employer had a change of fortune, knowing how hard it is to train Virtual Organization Leadership Executives and how expensive it is to "recruit the very best"  (e.g., Virtual Organization Recruiter charges anywhere from USD $45,000 - $250,000 to recruit a Virtual Organization Leadership Executive),  on a scale of 1-10,   how likely are you to refer your friends, colleagues and associates to your former employer?   

As you can see, this reciprocal Above and Beyond the Call of Duty gesture on your organization's part toward those soon-to-be former employees who had gone above and beyond the call of duty is the sort of gift that just keeps on giving.

In Conclusion

This Blueprint for a Thoughtful and Dignified Layoff for those in your organization who have gone above and beyond the call of duty pays off in so many ways that it is impossible to quantify all the benefits.   Click here to learn more about the Virtual Organization Leadership Executive Training, Assessment and Certification program. 

Let Us Manifest!

About Author:   Pierre Coupet, Q of Virtual Organization Management is the founder of Virtual Organization Management Institute (VOMI), VOMI Virtual Organization Academy,  Virtual Organization Leadership,  VOMI Global Think Tankand Virtual Organization Recruiter :: founder of the modern virtual organization management and virtual organization recruitment disciplines pioneered since 1997:: founder of League of Extraordinary Virtual Organization Executives:: and Lead Architect of Futuristic City-State Enclave Based On a Civilized World Financial SystemContact Online; or via CHAT.

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Copyright 2007-2020.  Pierre Coupet.  VOMI. Virtual Organization Management Institute. VOMI Virtual Organization Academy.  Virtual Organization Recruiter. VOMI Global Think Tank.  All rights reserved.  Cannot be reproduced without permission.