Is the concept of business hours redundant? Are employees expected to be open for business at all hours – even to be told there may not be any more hours?
According to media reports, Network Ten interim CEO Lachlan Murdoch emailed a memo to his staff after 10pm last Sunday night announcing a ‘painful restructure’ including job cuts. According to the memo, consultations about the redundancies started the following Monday morning.
Do you think the timing for that kind of news is legitimate? What about the channel – mass email? Would you wait until Monday morning where it may be possible to address some employees in person?
I suppose you could argue there’s never a good time to deliver bad news.
Yet isn’t there a case for showing respect towards your employees and delivering important news (that will have a significant impact on people’s livelihoods) at a time and place when they can best comprehend it, and ask legitimate questions of management about its impact? I don’t know about your workplace, but even the best open door policy is null and void at 10pm on a Sunday night (even at 8pm if you live in the West).
Perhaps the timing was chosen to get a jump on the following day’s media coverage so employees knew about it before they became the subject of the 24/7 news cycle.
Perhaps it was to address the rumour mill and get on top of the social media cycle.
Perhaps it was to get the news to the market before trading started the next morning.
Whatever the rationale, I don’t think the concept of business hours is redundant when you’re telling employees they may be redundant.
I think the timing of a message and the choice of communication medium says a lot about the messenger.
Have you ever been made redundant? How was the message delivered to you?