One way we do this is by consolidating your merchandise

Each time, friends and neighbors of mine were let go.Again and again, it appeared that for all the agonizing that might have gone into the decision to reduce staff, the decision often ended up being the “easy” part.Many managers have never before had to shrink their operations or workforces drastically.Now, as they struggle to weather the storm of recession, they risk making what the author says is a common mistake: assuming that they will have to make the tough initial decision but can leave it to others to carry out.Morale and service were horrible, and our customers and employees were leaving us in droves.

As the recession has intensified its grip on the world, and I’ve watched companies resort to extreme actions to weather the storm, it has struck me that this is a new experience for a whole generation of leaders.My predecessors had not integrated the acquisitions, however. We had far too much capacity and no common systems, processes, company name, or brand.We were being fined by the federal government for alleged Medicare fraud and abuse.Corning had been a paternalistic company, and the cuts marked a radical departure.

Their very magnitude was shocking; making matters worse, the company provided only a limited explanation and offered affected employees virtually no help in coping with the shock.

Many managers have never had to shrink their operations or workforces drastically, and as a result they are making a common mistake. In my more than 35 years in industry, much of it in turnaround situations, I’ve come to believe that leaders have to use “soft hands” as well as “hard hands” to be successful.