Managing and leading people through their outplacement

Managing and leading people through their outplacementAre you a manager, Head of department, having to make people redundant? It can be a difficult role to play.

I was managing a team of people that were based in the UK and in America. The UK team were to be made redundant while the US team were keeping their jobs. It was a difficult time. The UK team were angry; worried about what was going to happen to they; questioned their ability; would they get another job. The US team were uncomfortable that their valued colleagues were being put in this difficult situation, that they were losing good hard-working colleagues.

Role as a manager

As a manager my role was to keep both teams motivate as we moved through the redundancy consultation period. Communication was so important, having an open-door policy so that anyone could talk to me when they wanted to; continue to have team meetings so they were able to share what was going on; provide time for the UK team to hand over their work to the US team in a manner which enabled the UK team to feel proud of all their achievements and know they were leaving their roles in the best condition; support the US team to be able to take on the new work load without feeling over whelmed.

At the same time, I was going through my own redundance notice period. I felt it was important to be positive and supportive, while at the same time, I was hurting inside. I also found it was important to show empathy, vulnerability and share some of my own concerns and anxieties.

As we moved through the redundance it was interesting to hear what the UK team thought they would do. One decided to become a driving instructor; one decided to study nutrition; one decided to start immediately looking for another job.

What to do now?

My immediate reaction was to start job hunting, but I was intrigued in the total change of direction some of the teams were taking. So, I decided to do something I had always wanted to do, volunteer in Peru. I am so glad I did and as soon as I got back, refreshed and energised, I started to job hunt.
It is so important to manage the redundance period so people are able to continue working while having time to focus on their redundancy while leading them with empathy; having and open-door policy; demonstrating vulnerability and taking care of your self during your own redundance consultation.
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Thank you for reading this blog – Managing and leading people through their outplacement. If you would like more information or to get in touch, please fill in the contact form.

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