There is a right way to do a layoff. That previous bombshell of a sentence is click-bait, or, if you’re listening to this post on Swell, it’s auditory-bait. Of course, there is no way right way to do a layoff except to not do one. Though, one employer I had did a layoff in the best way possible, which was to ask the remaining employees to take a voluntary 10% pay cut, so that we had agency in saving some people from losing their employment. Painful as it was to give yourself a pay cut, it worked for the collective good.
That experience of watching a layoff happen to coworkers was instructive. For managers, the news was hard to deliver, the shock for those affected not lessened in any way by the words, and the company-sponsored placement benefits, completely and totally ineffective. That is why, when my employer recently laid off 11% of its workforce, over 300 employees, my colleagues and I resolved to stop being silent bystanders and help.
We created a The Hunt, a hot tech jobs database that is now up to 482 jobs. Here are some things we did to make it happen:
- Used Collaboration Tech. We used Airtable, an interactive database that embeds conversations in tables, allowing people to comment on jobs and tag each other. A $25/mo subscription was all we needed. Using Airtable make the list very approachable–ex. you could search for all jobs for designers who are remote.
- People power. We reached out to current sales managers at the company – who were most motivated to help previous colleagues. They spread the word to alumni of the company. These alumni added jobs, almost 500 of them, including at Facebook, HubSpot, and Zoom.
- Asked people to share on LinkedIn. We published the database on LinkedIn, announced our intention to help the 300+ job seekers. 60 people reshared the post, which got over 25,000 views.
- Sent email blasts to job-seekers. We started sending email blasts to job-seekers using Mixmax. Tips were traded, connections were made, and people were hired!
The results have been nothing short of spectacular. I spoke to John Beckmann, Vice President of Product at Zoom, who said the list has been incredibly helpful, he very quickly interviewed product managers who were listed in the Airtable. The product managers, in turn, have received interviews at some great companies. This is what The Hunt looks like, and you can go to its home page at https://startupian.com/jobs/ and experience it yourself.
If you’re a hiring manager or recruiter, it would be great if you read the instructions to add a job, and did so. There are hundreds of talented alumni waiting to find their next dream job.