We had an interesting experience at work today. At around 9am we got an email from the company president advising us that there was a mandatory conference call for our whole region. We knew it couldn’t be good….but how bad we weren’t too sure.

In conclusion, it wasn’t as bad as many of us were expecting….but its not good news by any means. Pretty much, in light of the situation in the economy our company is taking some measures to ensure that we can ride out these tough times. They said we’re doing better than many of our competitors, some who have had to lay off many people in the past few months. So far there have been no layoffs at our company. Here are some of the ways they’re being “proactive”:

-No holiday party and summer party like we have every year. (Bummer. Although I wouldn’t have been able to make it this year anyway.)

-Only one corporate meeting a year. (We usually have two where we all go up to corporate and they give us a buffet dinner. I actually enjoyed these!)

-Yearly raises are on hold for one cycle. (I just had mine, but I’m not sure if I will still be getting the raise for changing positions.)

-Bonuses will only be given based on measureable results, evaluated per account/project. In the past some received “entitlement bonuses”, and those will be cut. (Makes sense to me.)

-Training will continue, meaning I will still be studying to get that certification, and they will still reimburse me for the test fee when I pass.

-Managers were advised to cut back on team outings and lunches.

In summary they’re making efforts to cut costs across the board to avoid letting anyone go. I feel as though we’re on good footing right now, and for the next year….the problem will be if the economy stays as it is now for over a year. As it is client’s are hesitant on making deals and are having problems obtaining funding. Without these clients…..well, we’re screwed. Eventually we’ll run out of work.

I also happened to have lunch with the director of our local office today as well (more on why later). The call was fresh on our minds so we discussed it a bit. A few highlights from our conversation (that made me feel more confident about how we’re doing and where we’re going): even through all this our company isn’t cutting back in marketing or recruitment. Their reasoning is that when times rebound other companies are going to be hurting for manpower, and they want to make sure that their employees are still being developed. As for the marketing, thats the only way we’ll keep our visibility and reputation among clients which will help us land new accounts and clients. They’re also continuing to pay for our training and preparation for that certification….as he said, “its the future” and its an investment for the company.

I don’t know much about business, so while I’m really nervous as to how things will play out I have faith that these guys know what they’re doing, and they’ll do what they can to keep as many people on board as possible. I also have faith that times will improve sooner than later. Until then….[sigh] you know the drill: I’m going to keep my head and hopes up, and I’m going to keep saving.

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