By Jeffrey Saltzman, Kenexa
Schist Manufacturing & Mining
Long View, NY 10005
Attn: Jeffrey Saltzman
Pleasantville, NY 10570
It has been a long time since we have spoken and I hope this letter finds you and your family well. I am well, as is my family, with little Hilda growing like a weed. Berta is fine also and still that fabulous cook you remember.
As you can imagine my company is struggling to cope with the economic challenges we are all facing. And while I am confident we are doing many of the right things to cope with the situation, I am searching for additional ideas that could be applied not only here but to all organizations as they struggle with this economic tailspin.
I have put on a brave face for my employees telling them that we will come through this emerging stronger and better able to compete, but I have to confide in you, I am plenty worried. Demand for our products has fallen off the cliff and while it has now appeared to stabilize, it has done so at a level that does not sustain our current structure or business model.
I am plenty torn up about what to do, as you know this town is dependent on us for its survival, and I have known many of my employees and their families for years. As we have discussed, I ascribe to the notion that a corporation has many stakeholders to which we should be held accountable including our owners, our customers, our employees, our communities, not to mention our environment, the ultimate stakeholder.
In our manufacturing and mining operations we have cut costs to the bone and now I feel that I have to take the next step which will involve a restructuring and a layoff. But I feel that this is only the tip of the iceberg, with many changes needed throughout the organization in order to better assure our futures and the future of the business.
I am calling on experts from finance, operations, engineering, research and development, sales and distribution to contribute their thoughts regarding what we should be doing to better cope. I am not interested in the usual band-aid approach but am looking for sweeping new ideas that can be employed to create a more viable long-term robust company that would work in any organization. I would like to ask you and your professional network to contribute their thoughts as well. So here are my questions to you:
1. What can I/O Psychologists contribute to the dialog I have begun with my group of experts on how to create enhanced, more robust organizations so that as future economic cycles ensue we are better able to cope?
2. What specific recommendations would you and your networks have that can be implemented in the short, medium and long-term to that end?
3. And, as companies struggle to renew and revitalize themselves and their surviving employees after huge upheavals, such as layoffs, reorganizations, loss of customer base, and shrunken operations, what specific steps would you recommend we take? How do we heal?
I greatly look forward to your response.
**This post was written by the author as a hypothetical case study and is not an actual letter recieved by the author.