Valuing the workforce – not

How many times have we heard the phrase: “our employees are our most valuable assets?” Guess they don’t really mean it. Bottom line is that workers are a cog in the machine — as evidenced by Circuit City’s announcement: Circuit City Cuts 3,400 ‘Overpaid’ Workers:

Circuit City fired 3,400 employees in stores across the country yesterday, saying they were making too much money and would be replaced by new hires willing to work for less.
The company said the dismissals had nothing to do with performance but were part of a larger effort to improve the bottom line. The firings represent about 9 percent of the company’s in-store workforce of 40,000.
“Retail is very competitive and store operations just have to contain their costs,” said Jim Babb, a Circuit City spokesman. “We deeply regret the negative impact that was had on these folks. It was no fault of theirs.”

Steven Pearlstein summed it up nicely Attempts to Trim the Fat Merely Cut at the Meat:

But if retail is as competitive as Babb says, you’d think a merchant might want to keep its best salespeople — you know, the ones who know the most and have records of selling the most. That would be particularly true at stores where customers have lots of questions that need answering — for example, those at a chain that sells major home appliances, flat-screen TVs and digital cameras.

Let me pull a Jim Cramer here — SELL NOW. They obviously don’t have clue and are grasping at straws.
Opps — too late. Wall Street has already told us what it thinks. Circuit City dropped over 4% yesterday.

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5 thoughts on “Valuing the workforce – not”

  1. On Wisconsin?

    I find what is happening in the State of Wisconsin right now unsettling. And I don’t mean just the protests and counter-protests. And not simply because the move by the Governor to break the public-sector unions is more a demonstration…

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  2. On Wisconsin?

    I find what is happening in the State of Wisconsin right now unsettling. And I don’t mean just the protests and counter-protests. And not simply because the move by the Governor to break the public-sector unions is more a demonstration…

    Like

  3. But still losing an intangible asset

    Back to our theme of losing an intangible asset, here is this story from the Wall Street Journal – Public Employees Rush to Retire. And here is the story’s tag-line: “Governments Save Money, but Lose Expertise.” Remind you of anything?…

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  4. But still losing an intangible asset

    Back to our theme of losing an intangible asset, here is this story from the Wall Street Journal – Public Employees Rush to Retire. And here is the story’s tag-line: “Governments Save Money, but Lose Expertise.” Remind you of anything?…

    Like

  5. The lessons of Circuit City

    Last Friday’s posting made a passing reference to Circuit City. In numerious previous postings, I have held up the now-bankrupt Circuit City electronics retail chain as the example of how not to foster your intangible assets. Now comes an article…

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