I was at a plant shutdown announcement last week. Those are hard, but here are a few things the President of the company did really well to mitigate the closure's impact.
1. He got to the point quickly when announcing the shutdown and pending layoffs. He didn't beat around the bush, the first thing he did was make the announcement.
2. He didn't talk about himself. He mentioned that it wasn't an easy decision and the reasons why the plant was shutting down, but he didn't make the announcement about him.
3. They've set their employees up as well as they could have. The plant isn't shutting down for several months, giving plenty of time for employees to find a new job. In the meantime, there are pay escalations for those who stay on until the very end.
4. They brought in a licensed therapist for any employees needing or wanting to talk and that therapist is going to be available to them during the entirety of the shutdown process.
5. They had me there as a resource for the employees as they begin their job searches. I'm there to help them with resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, job search networking, and interview preparation as part of their outplacement package.
6. Lastly, they gave everyone the day off today and paid them for it. Hearing that your job is going away in a few months will hit anyone like a ton of bricks. Giving their employees time to process it, talk to a therapist about it tomorrow, and then talk to me about what's next is setting them up for success.
There have been so many public stories of company leaders putting their foot in their mouth when laying off employees that I felt compelled to share this one.
When facing a plant shutdown, there are so many things you can do to set your transitioning employees up for success. An outplacement or career transition company is certainly one of them, but also consider a therapist or other benefits you can provide.
And if you're facing a layoff and want to talk through additional best practices, fill out the Contact Us form and let's talk.