Happy 2009 to all of you fine folks out here under the SuN!
I am hoping for some advice and wisdom on this topic. We are generally faced with this question when determining raises and promotions, and it usually seems to be that seniority correlates to performance, so it`s never so much a dilemma.
However, as the economy turns, and our buyers trim the fat, so must we. In order to keep the production line running efficiently (there are some redundancies that we have recognized) AND profitably, we have crunched the numbers, tossed out paychecks for both CEO and COO (my husband and myself) and crunched again, and there is no way around the number 2.
The number itself bears no consequence other than to our bottom line, but what it represents is far more important. 2 lives that depend on the income to provide for their families. 2 people that have dedicated more than their time to our company. 2 people with hopes and ambitions and innovations. 2 living, breathing human beings. 2 employees that must be downsized, even if just temporarily.
Now don`t get me wrong. We have let employees go in the past. Non-performance is a clear cut case. It is never fun to fire people, unless of course, you`re the Donald, but it is a necessary evil as an employer, for the survival of your company.
This particular circumstance is an anomaly for us at GreenBeans. No clear cut reasons, or at least none pertaining to the individual employee. Just an urgent need to cut redundancies and payroll and for the moment. We`ve examined the variables of seniority vs. performance. Both easily measured. But not clear cut. Our Wall of Fame is filled with recognition and rewards for every single employee. Some more, some less. As the old Toltec wisdom goes in the Fourth Agreement "Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick..." Some of them have been with us since the beginning, and some just a few months. All have proved to be reliable and hard working. So what`s a boss to do?
Your thoughts are greatly appreciated.
PS When I say temporarily, I am talking about 2-3 month period at which time projects slated to increase margin will produce ROI`s.