An expensive luxury?
Last night I attended the CLSIG Seminar on Redundancy hosted by Jacky Berry and Bruce Madge at the British Medical Association. It was attended by a variety of people who are or may be affected by redundancy. Jacky started off the session by asking that we abide by Chatham House Rules in order that people feel safe and secure in discussing what can be a highly emotive and sensitive problem. This encouraged lively and also frank discussion from both managers and employees.
Jacky spoke honestly about her experiences and the often overlooked position of the manager having to put aside their feelings to utter the words "you're redundant". The lists of both the range of emotions felt and the reasons for redundancy could've been separate seminars in themselves, such was the strength of feeling in the room.
I think what I will take from the seminar is that if you are affected by redundancy, you must remember you are not alone. We resolved to form a network, a community of support from last night's attendees, to know that there is someone else out there who can listen, support, advise and understand. Also that we have to be objective, to realise and accept that redundancy is a business decision, that it is not personal.
"An expensive luxury we can't afford" was the title of the seminar. If you have the privilege of hearing Jacky speak, ask her about her first experience of redundancy and the fabulous jumper she has as a souvenir!