The "Resource Action"

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

On October 30, my manager, Pablo, called me at my house. I asked if I could phone him back, as I was on speaker and couldn't find a handset. He awkwardly said he was traveling and would call again in a couple of minutes. As I found the handset, I remembered ,"Pablo doesn't know my home phone number." Sure enough, he had tried calling the cell phone, but I hadn't heard it. I realized what was up just as the phone rang again. I answered and he started with the script, "Due to the need to rebalance skills, eliminate redundancies, and deliver greater efficiencies, the North America Sales and Distribution is announcing a resource action...including you."

Happy Halloween! Except, this scary thing was real. I tried to listen as he finished his script, but it really was a blur, and his reading was very monotone. I didn't have any questions, and the packet he overnighted me had all the details spelled out. It even has its own acronym: USRA (US Sales Resource Action), so it must be official.

In thinking about things, I can see why I was included in they layoffs. I hadn't been happy with my job ever since Pablo took over as my manager a year ago, and now as a non-contributing (although non-paid as well) employee, I would be the most logical choice to bump off the team. Sadly, I was one of three (from a team of eight) who were "resourced." The resource action includes 230 employees from Software Sales. We have 30 days to find a new position inside the company, or to accept the package of 2 weeks pay for every year with the company, to a maximum of 26 weeks.

In my situation, all the reasons I decided to take a leave of absence are still in place. I'm not at all ready to work full-time again, much less start a new position right now. I'll take the package and consider it a nice windfall, then look for a new job somewhere when I'm ready to enter the workforce again. Unfortunately, I keep learning of friends/coworkers who are also losing their jobs, and they aren't in as good a position.

My biggest loss is my identity as a Lotus/IBM employee. 12 years is a huge chunk of my life. I'm still a stockholder, but it's going to take a little while to get the Lotus Yellow out of my blood, if you know what I mean. If nothing else, my house is full of IBM gear I've accumulated. Without checking, I could only guarantee that the kids' bathrooms are free of stuff I've accumulated courtesy of work. On second thought, I do have hotel soaps and shampoos in there from business trips.

So, that's the news that I've needed to get out there. Unfortunately, it's prevented me from keeping up on postings, but I needed to muse on things a while before I could type this out.


Anonymous said...

Tamara, I'm so sorry to hear about you being included in the RA. I'm totally shocked at the people they let go. I hope it gives you an opportunity to find what you really love to do and be happy!

- Andrea

MJ/Mom/GrammaJ said...

wow. What a convoluted, fancy shmancy way to say you are fired. Layed off. I know there is a difference. Yes, this will be an adjustment for you. Good to see you blogging again.

Tara said...


I'm really sorry to hear about the layoff. I fear that they've only just begun (or that they've been going on for a while and I've been out of the loop). I wish you and James and the girls all the best and hope that something good comes from this eventually. If there's anything that I can do, please let me know.


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