Layoffs: Causes, Signs, Tips, and Getting prepared


Layoffs deals with the permanent or temporary termination of the employment of a worker/employee or group of workers/employees (referred to as collective layoff) usually due to business reasons.

Layoffs can happen in any organization especially when the economy takes a dip, therefore the need to cut down unnecessary costs as well as improve their performance.

Signs a Company might be headed toward making layoffs

Companies lay off workers for some reasons but most times this occurs as a result of the present economic condition. It could also be that the company is going through downsizing or restructuring.

There are several signs that a company is heading towards laying off employees. Below are some of the signs to watch out for:

A freeze on expenditures

The company stops purchasing the necessary items it used to purchase, items such as office supplies and snacks during meeting.

Managers stop attending conference meetings

When you notice that managers stay out of meetings and remain discreet about their reasons for not attending, then you can sense a warning.

Putting scheduled projects on hold

Scheduled projects keep being postponed or cancelled without reasons.

Merging a company

Merging is another good sign of layoff in a company.  When a company merges with another or becomes acquired by another company, such company is at the verge of laying off its employees.

Managers spend more time with HR

When you notice that the conference room is most time occupied by HRs and managers, this is a sign that your company is heading towards layoff.

Cutting down budget

This is another sign that layoff is coming the way. Certain budgets such as marketing budgets are cut down, office parties cease and top executives are flying business coach.

Tips for holding onto your job during layoffs and hiring freezes

Below are some tips for employees to increase the probability of holding onto their jobs when the economy takes a dip

Be that indispensable person having the required organization knowledge

Make yourself an employee your establishment cannot do without. Don’t wait until you’re told what to do. Know much about the company’s history, business, and customers.

With your knowledge, you play a vital role in decision making. You share information and train other employees willingly. Don’t be viewed as an employee who lacks new ideas.

Ensure that the right people notice your contributions

Ensure the right people notice your contributions to avoid layoffs

Contributions that yield positive outcomes like improved sales, will help in keeping your job. Making this improvement is not enough, let your boss know you were responsible for the process. Your approach to the whole process should be modest.

Generate some income for the company

Companies rarely let go of employees that generates income for them. Keep a close watch on the overall profit and sales of your company, and if you’re not generating any income from your current job, transfer to one that does, and if your job creates money already, generate even more for your company.

Request more work and take on challenging assignments

to avoid layoffs, request more work and take on challenging assignments

By asking for additional work, you are assisting co-workers meet deadlines. When you volunteer for more challenging work, you will be appreciated in that organization. The quantity of assignments contributed increases the value of the employee.

Ensure your Boss likes you

This should not be interpreted negatively as what we talking about is developing a friendly, supportive and positive relationship with your manager.

Managers do not terminate the employment of workers they have a good working relationship with. They are humans just like us, and once they like you, depend on you, and trust you, they will not lay you off even when the need arises.

Your Personal and Professional Skills must continue to grow and develop

You may be valued at your work place, but if you don’t improve your skills, your boss might show you the door. It’s a good thing that your boss likes you, but this cannot come above the success of the company. Your skills, talents, and contributions must be relevant and important to the success of the company.

Tips for Staying successful during layoffs  

Get yourself prepared for layoffs.

You must prepare for the worst. You must think of what to do in case the company lays you off and be well-positioned to bounce back quietly.

Stay above the fray.

When layoffs are bound to happen, employees will start speculating about who will stay and who will go. During this period, avoid malicious or negative conversations. Doing this will raise your anxiety levels.

It could be tempting to constantly check in with your boss to know the status of the layoff process, which is wrong because your boss may not even know about it or might have been told to keep the information confidential.

Earn your keep.

During this period, you need to reduce stress around the office and ensure they want to keep you around by keeping everything running smoothly. Complete tasks on time and try to pick up additional work.

Also read: 8 Reasons why shouldn’t lend money to family or friends

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