The year 2009-2010
The time when the first recession took place in IT!
It was early morning, there were some rumors spread all around about the WFM’s (Work Force Management), the companies are doing to sustain. The cost-cutting was already done with the small little things, like fewer tissue rolls, no wastage of food, or paper, less use of electricity and printers. Somehow these were the alarms that company is going through a tough phase.
And now the time was for layoffs. She came to office on time and was sitting on her desk.
An email arrived in her office email box, asking her to resign today, her contract was being terminated immediately. The email had all the formalities an office email has to, keeping the text polite. Even though the message was harsh, obviously whatever you coat on the sour thing sourness never completely disappears, leaves its taste.
The email was a shocking surprise, she immediately wanted to know if anyone else has got it too. She looked at her colleague, he was sitting next to her. The same expression on his face confirmed it that he is sailing in the same boat. Now, they both whispered something, probably to know if anyone else is also affected. Everyone else looked so unaware of the reality they were facing.
Soon the supervisor arrived and called both of them in the meeting room, and they followed him. The supervisor was a young man, having his own stories of dragged into this job (by his father), as he wanted to be an actor or producer and he was educated as a lawyer and working as a supervisor, a few years back only he was one of them only.
Inside the meeting room, they were told that he is feeling sorry to announce that company is doing layoffs and they have to resign from their jobs. It came as an additional burden, another frustration in their mind. The same thing announced, twice, once over the email, and now inside this 6X6 room. The same meeting room where they have been listening words of praise and appreciation, “that they were doing great”. They wanted to ask why, on what basis they have been chosen. Why not the guy who is so new, and still doesn’t very well knows the processes and functions(he sits just behind them). Is it because he was some relative of the supervisor?
Uhhhh, with everything going on inside their brain, they assured supervisor they will send a resignation email soon, in brief, the supervisor has told them the content, already.
She was little older to the guy who was sailing with her, at this time. She told him, ‘ok buddy, we have to anyways leave the job, but we are in office already and we have just started our today’s work, we will finish it and only then we will draft an email after that only’. She did not want to make her other colleagues, burdened with their work, on their last day.
With all the remaining positive energy, they were doing, their assigned work, it was taking little time. The tension was prevailing at the supervisor’s desk, he was eagerly waiting for the email. In these type of situations everyone gets worried about their own position, jobs and duties, so was he, he too was answerable to managers.
They finished their work and finally, an email was sent. Huuuhh, everything was over. The supervisor called them again in the meeting room, this time, with other colleagues as well. Ahhhh and another sugar-coated announcement was made, that these two brilliant and most efficient employees are leaving their office today only, and, as a farewell, we will go out for lunch (contribution).
The restaurant was a small open place, where all of those 12 were sitting, in rows of six and facing each other. In between, all the jokes and chatters, her mind was full of thoughts, and questions. How is she going to handle this sudden incident, how will she manage all the questions her friends family and relatives and especially in-laws going to ask her, why she is at home why she doesn’t go to the office. She doesn’t want any pity on this sudden thwart, from anybody, in between she could read the sympathy and pity in eyes of her colleagues. She was almost three months pregnant, she was planning to announce it soon, but before that this, announcement, she was facing.
Her brain was banging on another question continuously, was still their why only we two are chosen for layoff from our team. We were never told that we are not doing good, what happened to all those appreciations from managers. Now she was carrieng a virtual flag of her thwart, on her shoulder.
She already informed her husband about this layoff, he was coming to pick her soon. After lunch, all went back to the office building. The last time she was going to be there, she wanted to go back directly from the restaurant but she had to take all her belongings.
Her desk was well decorated with some real plants and some tiny-mini artifacts. She left the plants with one of her colleagues who helped her in her initial days when she joined.
She wanted to disappear immediately, seeoffs were little painful for her. Keeping her eyes away from others eyes, she wished goodbye to everyone. They both left in the same elevator, but ahead they had different aims, or rather aimless at that very point in time. She already got a call from her husband, he was waiting downstairs. She reached the car and buckled the belts. Husband politely asked that how is she doing? It becomes tough for even loved ones, to handle a person who is going through some sudden changes in life, and unexpected situations.
She just remained quiet, kind of sleepy head, it was a lot she had faced in last few hours.
They reached home, husband offered to go out for dinner, to make her feel better. She accepted it, she too wanted to go out, away from this place or from her thoughts.
The next morning was, as usual, she had her morning sickness, the first trimester. Husband left for office and she was alone. She was ready to face it. She chose to enjoy her little baby, growing inside instead of sickening thoughts, of, being laid off. A new morning brought new thoughts and new sunshine, she could not stand with her anxiety for long. The feeling of being thwart could not prevail, longer, the new life was growing inside her. She checked with her sailing partner, he also seemed fine, he was planning to post his resume on other companies.