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Berger Blog

Expanding the discussion of Generatonal issues in organizations, Leadership, and Individual & Professional Growth.

Not what I had expected

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

The piece that caught my attention today is a local item with a universal issue at its heart. In today's Washington Post, there was a story about how the DC-Metro area's largest grocery store chain is consolidating and streamlining (read: layoffs) courtesy of the (relatively new) Dutch ownership group, Royal Ahold NV. It seems that making your own bread and ice cubes is an overhead item that doesn't make the cut in Holland.

So the story goes that about 500 people, mostly in the distribution and wharehousing parts of the company, are going to be losing their jobs.

"I feel let down and betrayed by the company," said Steve McCabe, 46, who works at Giant's health and beauty care warehouse, now slated for closure. "We thought this was a safe haven. You do your 35 years and you're out."

Okay Steve, what year was your quote from? I mean, you've been in the work force for ALL of the corporate downsizing era. You aren't a dock worker or a letter carrier from the 50's. You don't work on the shop floor in Detroit? Talk about Generational Time Warp. And which 35 years are you talking about? Did you start paying union dies when you were at 15?

Okay, enough about Steve, although his comments do point to an interesting, curious, and still-present dynamic: Job security.

I was working with some executives from a leading global financial services company earlier this week. What made them interesting, relative to this conversation, was that they were about the same age as Steve, and they had all been laid off recently. Was there bitterness about their early departure from their jobs? Sure. Were they worried about what was next? Absolutely. Were they complaining about thinking that they had a job for life? Not a chance. They didn't like it, but they are among the millions of Boomers who are beginning to accept the new -- albeit unfortunate -- reality. Job security exists only for those people still living in the Generational Time Warp.


Copyright 2005 – Michael Berger, Transformational Consulting. Reprinting or reproduction without permission is prohibited
posted by Michael Berger, 1:42 PM | link | 0 comments |
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