My company has global offices. In our particular branch, we have around 80 people. Yesterday they laid off 15. Captain Chaos is gone. Fine. Dancer and British Boy from my department are gone. That sucks. We got through the morning of layoffs. Took British Boy out for a farewell lunch (Dancer is in Europe on PTO. Imagine getting laid off while on vacation?!) Came back, went to the pep talk by our department VP, The Devil. Blah, blah, blah: "We decided to take a pessimistic outlook and cut deep and hard just once rather than be conservative and do another round later." In that meeting, Savvy Tech Woman was asking great questions. She came by later and we chatted about our shock as well as a few things related to design stuff I've been helping her with. At 3:55 pm she had to scoot across the building for her one-on-one with Fresh Face--the guy in charge of our branch.
Around 5 pm, The Devil stopped by to check how we were doing. I shared my hope that Dancer would be able to continue as a contractor out of our London office. She's been there for two months doing an exchange and they want to keep her on. I told The Devil, "Dancer has been Savvy Tech Woman's go-to person on the technology update. With Dancer gone, she'll be coming to me!"
The Devil looked straight at me: "No, she won't"
"What do you mean?"
"She was just laid off. She was the last of the layoffs."
When I got home and downloaded my day onto poor Jrex's head, he listened well. Then he said the words that will be echoing in my head throughout the rah rah "Town Hall" meeting we're supposed to have this afternoon.
"I heard a talk by a guy at Hopkins. He was an oncologist who tried it all: private practice, industry, academia. He told us, 'One of the things I learned in all my different opportunities: You may love the institution, but the institution doesn't love you'."