Two years ago this coming Friday, the firm laid off the last hired person and, at that time, they talked to my two co-workers with the aforementioned many years of employment. Though those co-workers didn't tell me what was spoken behind closed doors, I knew. We had already been told that the revenue was down at that time and, once they let that girl go in 2010, they held a meeting and told us she may not be the only person.
Am I wrong in thinking that the next person to be laid off should be the next to last person hired and not someone who has given the firm 40 years of her life? See here's the kicker I believe: the receptionist was the last person hired, approximately 5.5 years ago. She is buddy-buddy with the office manager, flirts with the youngest partner and generally stays out of trouble. How can she get in trouble if she doesn't do anything? Oh, correction. She does do stuff. Things the office manager instructs her to do, including data entry of the lawyers' and paralegals' time sheets, answers calls and types letters. Once all that is done, she spends her time staring out the front door, talking with another co-worker, talking on the phone, twirling her hair! Well maybe not twirling her hair, but you can see what I'm getting at. While my co-worker X knows her job and does it, receptionist Y does the bare minimum to get by on a daily basis, and, if she has to a do a few more things in the absence of the office manager, she is overwhelmed and can barely wait to get out of work so she can go home and post on Facebook what a crazy busy day she had. She does not know busy!
I am very angry the way the bosses are treating a long time loyal employee!! One boss is relatively new and the other is just spineless! The office manager runs them, despite having no prior management experience, including no HR experience.
Is my co-worker X the perfect employee? No. There is no such thing! But I truly believe in treating people with respect. I see no problem letting X stay until she is ready to retire in about 4.5 years time and let the receptionist go. I'm sure between the office manager, who has time on her hands, and the rest of us, we could cover the reception desk. If the revenue increased then hire her back or another receptionist.
I suggested to X that she see a lawyer outside the firm just to make sure the bosses are within their rights of letting her go without a severance after giving her a two year's notice. She is very worried she'll be lost without her job, but I think she will be okay once she gets use to not coming to work, if that is possible. She shouldn't have to worry about money.
We did have some wonderful bosses, but have lost two of them to retirement and one to the supreme court bench. The other boss we had was a vile excuse for a human being and one of the main reasons why the firm is suffering financially now.
I'm so upset, but don't have many I can talk to. I don't want it to slip to another co-worker that I think the receptionist should be the one let go. That doesn't make for a good work environment, but, then again, the bosses and the office manager haven't created a good work environment over the past few years. We had what I call a salary increase four years ago, but haven't had a yearly raise since the fall of 2005. We didn't even get our Christmas bonus last year, which has never happened in the past. I don't know how long bonuses have been given out. The firm is more than 50 years old. Many of those Christmases included included bonuses.
I'm quite a self-righteous person that believes people such as co-worker X deserve respect, and feel that people like receptionist Y should do more for their employer than what she does. I'm an anal retentive over-achiever, so you can imagine had badly it irks me when I see her reading the newspaper or staring out the window.
I just needed to vent and hope if anyone does get through this they will leave me some thoughts. Oh, btw, I am looking for another job and am kicking myself for a job I didn't apply for in 2010 (not that I would have gotten it). My financial situation is very poor. I am integral to the running of the real estate department in this firm, which has been one reason why the firm has been able to stumble along as best it could for a number of years. I don't think my job is in jeopardy, but who knows. Anyone hiring? LOL
Thank you all for reading!