Friday, November 27, 2009

Economics 101: Outsourced

Today I arrived at work to discover I had no job.

Suffice to say it was through no fault of my own - a couple of us got laid off.

Below is the letter I sent to the owner and senior staff of the company.



In the few short hours since my dismissal, Ive had the chance to think about a few things.


Why wasn't I given any notice?

I have been with this company for nearly a year - covering shifts whenever I was asked, taking on extra duties, being prompt and proactive in my job.

Did it not occur to you to let me know that I would be out of a job in the near future?

You make all your decisions with care, and I assume this one was no different. You knew that you were training someone to take my job.

Did you not tell me because the law says you dont have to because I'm part time...because I work 3 or 4 hours less per week than Deanna or Lori?

Maybe that is also why, in deciding not to give me any notice, you declined to have the decency to offer the standard 2 weeks severance?

Instead of treating me with the respect due not just a long-term employee of this company, but also an associate, and a fellow human being - you decided that I did not deserve that respect...

You didnt have to give it to me, by law, and in that case - why give it?

It's ironic that you mention 'economics' as the reason why I have been replaced, since you are directly contributing to the unraveling of the Canadian economy by exporting my job.

Were there other options? Of course there were - you are a smart enough guy to start this company and offer your employees the true Minimum Living Wage, something which really impressed me at the time.

Had you approached us, your long-term employees, and said 'unless we make some sacrifices, one of us will lose their job' - I personally would have gladly taken a reduction in pay rather than see my colleague lose their livelihood.

I would like to think that as a team, we all could have adjusted to financial realities within the organization without contributing to the problem by outsourcing jobs.

God forbid that the profit expectations of the company be aligned with some sort of loyalty to employees.

It would be interesting to know what your new Mexican employees are getting paid - did Geeks acquire 2 Mexicans for the price of 1 Canadian?

I know - it's impolite to speak about 'economic matters' in such a fashion.

When you wrote to me this morning John, you mentioned that you had tried to call me - since to lay me off over the phone would be "unprofessional".

Let me tell you - your conduct in this matter is the definition of unprofessional.

I thought we had a good relationship - we didn't know each other well, but I thought there was mutual respect at the very least.

I read your letter of reference, by the way, and summarily deleted it, although the piece of trash is still stuck to this email.

IT'S WRITTEN FOR A WOMAN. Take a look and see for yourself.

I cant imagine a more appropriate finale. Thanks for making me laugh, at least.

You will never get a reference call for me. After today, I would be embarrassed to associate myself with your company.

Very sincerely,

Nathan Munn

ps. In the interest of philosophy (which is what economics is - not a science), here is a quote reflecting the sick logic that I thought Geeks was above.

"If the world operates as one big market, every employee will compete with every person anywhere in the world who is capable of doing the same job. There are lots of them and many of them are hungry."
Andy Grove, former CEO, Intel Corp.


November 23, 2009

To Whom It May Concern,

I am happy to recommend Nathan Munn for employment at your company.

I had the pleasure of working with Nathan at Geeks On The Way where she was the Administrative Assistant in our head office. She was organized, efficient, punctual and possessing of excellent customer service skills. Because of the fast pace and sometimes cranky customers, her cooperative attitude and good cheer were important and appreciated. Although her primary duties were administrative, she assumed some bookkeeping duties as well.

Nathan deserves serious consideration as a potential employee, and I recommend her highly.


John **********

Geeks On The Way