Older Workers Targeted for Layoffs?

Older Workers Targeted for Layoffs?

By Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

Someone asked, “As companies are enacting layoffs, it’s likely that many older workers will be let go due to ageism.

I’d like to write a piece about the reasons why seasoned employees are needed and offer great value.

Could you please share your thoughts and quotes about how older workers help benefit their companies, and by losing them it would hurt the business?

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I replied:

IMO ageism isn’t the first reason people are chosen as part of mass layoffs. Cost is. They would rather get rid of 1 person who manages the people who do the work and foist the work on another manager than getting rid of 2 people who do the actual work.

Yes, there is a salary saving but there is institutional knowledge that walks out the door with the person. Bad press is created.

They go on social media and share their job loss with friends and others and now the ability to hire is adversely affected for a number of years.

Each of these people has also demonstrated personal qualities to those beneath them in the org chart that represent cultural values that a firm now shows were BS. “We don’t value these things we’ve told you. We value the bottom line.” And they should. After all. No money, no business.

However, ripping the heart out of a firm is a mistake. Start with disengaged workers and not more expensive older ones unless they are disengaged.

Layoffs are an opportunity to prune dead wood. Unfortunately, decisions are made at too high a level to be conscious of where the living branches are. The firm loses too many “glue people,” who represent the heart and soul of an organization.

Many of these people act as lieutenants to a leader or manager, taking things off their plate so issues are resolved at a lower level without escalation. Remove them, managers start getting killed.


Ⓒ The Big Game Hunter, Inc., Asheville, NC 2022 

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Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. He is hired to provide No BS Career Advice globally. That can involve job search, hiring staff, management, leadership, career transition and advice about resolving workplace issues. Schedule a discovery call at my website, www.TheBigGameHunter.us

He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with over 2400 episodes.

I do a livestream on LinkedIn, and YouTube (on the JobSearchTV.com account) Tuesdays and Fridays at 1 PM Eastern. You can send your questions about job search, hiring better, management, leadership or to get advice about a workplace issue to me via messaging on LinkedIn or in chat during the approximately 30-minute show.

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