Hang on, friends! I’m afraid it may be getting ugly

How’s the mood in your workplace? Tell the board of directors!

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34 Responses to “Hang on, friends! I’m afraid it may be getting ugly”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    From its Web site: The Courier-Journal will lay off about 15 employees and leave other positions vacant as part of a broader cost-cutting move by the newspaper’s parent, Gannett Co., the newspaper announced today.

    An unspecified number of jobs will be cut at The Courier-Journal by not filling vacant positions. Overall Gannett will eliminate about 1,000 positions, or 3 percent of its total work force.

    Arnold Garson, publisher of The Courier-Journal, said in a memo to employees that the local layoffs aren’t as deep as those experienced at many other metro newspapers this year.

    “As you all know, the newspaper industry — like many other businesses and industries — is in the midst of a difficult economic time,” Garson wrote, adding that the company doesn’t see the present trend of declining revenues improving anytime soon.

    Layoff notices will be completed by Aug. 27, Garson said, and severance packages will be offered to those who lose their jobs. Severance and continued medical benefits will be based on length of service.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    The 3 percent layoffs “aren’t as deep” because the employee pool has dwindled due to previous workforce reduction methods: frozen and eliminated positions, previous layoffs and buyouts.

    Liars!

  3. Anonymous Says:

    The mood is dismal at USA TODAY. The newsroom morale is at an all-time low. People are scared, angry, confused and overworked. Some are just profoundly disappointmented and feeling betrayed. Most everything that once functioned well is now a disjointed, exhausting chore. Simple tasks take more effort, generate more confusion and anger. Efficiency is all but gone. It is no longer an honor to work here. Management has created a variety of near-impossible working conditions. And what really kills me is that a lot of the pain was self-inflicted from within the newsroom. The buyouts and other top management or corporate decsions hurt, sure. But what the managing and deputy managing editors have created is far worse. They are the ones who took the tools from our hands or just chose to neglect some serious concerns. They are the ones who came up with a host of convoluted “solutions” that solved nothing and created new problems. Their thinking they had all the answers, and not listening to those on the front line who could have guided them, resulted in a more tense newsroom. There is a real bad domino effect to all of this. Problems that start in one section often snowball and roll into another department. Those who really want to do their jobs can’t. They suffer in silence because to speak up at this point means you’re likely to become a target if in fact layoffs occur. Some folks, admittedly, are doing fine. I won’t even get into the reasons why they aren’t complaining or feeling the pain. Suffice to say, the flagship is sinking and is no longer a newsroom one should strive to get a job in. I would suggest to other Gannettoids to stay far away from USA TODAY. It’s a disaster.

  4. Anonymous Says:

    Good Times.
    Any time you meet a payment.
    Good Times.
    Any time you need a friend.
    Good Times.
    Any time you’re out from under.

    Not getting hastled, not getting hustled.
    Keepin’ your head above water,
    Making a wave when you can.

    Temporary lay offs.
    Good Times.
    Easy credit rip offs.
    Good Times.
    Scratchin’ and surviving.
    Good Times.
    Hangin in a chow line
    Good Times.
    Ain’t we lucky we got ’em
    Good Times.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    The tough times at USA Today may not get a lot of sympathy from people in community newspaper information centers.
    Back in the Day, when even small newspapers were committed to sending one or maybe two reporters to work at USA Today for a year while still paying them, the reporters and editors never wanted to come back “home.” The working conditions, accommodations, location and workload were so much nicer that coming back to Podunk, America to cover city council was faced with real dread.
    Sort of a “howya gonna keep them down on the farm, after they see Pairee” effect.
    USA Today was a cush job. For the people still laboring in the trenches, the fact that people laboring in the towers may seem like they’re getting their just desserts.

  6. Anonymous Says:

    At the APP in Jersey, the mood has reached a plateau of negativity. Can’t go much lower.

    There’s rumblings and grumblings throughout the newsroom today about the 3% cut, but no one can really figure out where a hit like that can still be absorbed after the “restructuring” earlier this year.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    In Fort Collins we just don’t seem to care anymore. We come in, do our work, maybe laugh with coworkers and go home. If you look around the room, we are much like drones from some sci-fi movie. The impending doom of seeing more of our hardworking staff being laid off has become so routine that we just don’t seem to care anymore. That doesn’t mean we don’t care about those that lose their jobs, we are just so drained that we can’t find a way to muster up anymore emotion for the hell hole we work in.

  8. Anonymous Says:

    Aw, gloomy morning at the McLean Starbucks this morning? Well buck up Boopsie, because hard times in the tower is nirvana to what is going on in the field. The flagship isn’t doing much for us these dismal days.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Doesn’t surprise me, the comments above about USA TODAY. Their newsroom MEs want yes-men (or women) as their reports. One specifically told me that. Not indirectly, but directly! They don’t want to hear the truth from the front lines. That is a classic and often fatal mistake of both business and even the military. The best managers welcome the truth, whether it’s good or bad. Heck, even NASA lost a shuttle for that very yes-man, don’t rock the boat reason. Another high level editor actually told me recently that this isn’t a good time for raising red flags about anything. What!?

  10. Anonymous Says:

    The truth? That’s laughable. It doesn’t exist where I work. Not anymore. A high level editor recently told us that an ominous meeting coming up soon at USA TODAY has nothing to do with layoffs, and is just a regular, mundane meeting that the publisher holds every now and then, even though none of us recall such a meeting. Said not to worry. Oh really? What’s all this news about Gannett getting ready to cut 1,000 jobs then? One day after our editor denies anything is cooking, I have to read about 1,000 layoffs on here?

  11. Anonymous Says:

    These layoffs are more about the newspapers in the field, I think, not at USAT.

  12. Anonymous Says:

    ^^^They [USA TODAY staffers] suffer in silence because to speak up at this point means you’re likely to become a target if in fact layoffs occur.

    Anyone who feels this shouldn’t be in the business in the first place. There are many problems at USA TODAY, but retribution and targeting is not one of them. To think that n-n-n-nervous r-r-r-reporters are w-w-w-worrying they c-c-c-can’t sp-sp-speak is just n-n-n-n-neurotic.

    No, things aren’t great, and things are falling apart on many aspects (graphics, anyone?), but stop the shaking and sh-sh-sh-shivering!

  13. Jim Hopkins Says:

    Maybe so, @12:57 p.m. But I was one of the few people asking Paulson & Co. questions at those lame monthly staff meetings. Where were you?

  14. Anonymous Says:

    St. Cloud feels the pain. We haven’t had layoffs in the newsroom — yet — but that’s because we have been “lucky” to have three positions open forever, so just about 10 percent of our staff. We have everyone expected to do someone else’s job while also expecting them to keep on top of their own. We are just existing. It’s lies by omission all around here too.

  15. Anonymous Says:

    Jim, are you saying you were forced out because you asked tough questions? Isn’t that what reporters are supposed to do? I greatly doubt you were targeted or pushed out. The buyouts were voluntary, right?

  16. Anonymous Says:

    With all the rumors of more buyouts and layoffs being true you have to watch out for something new, your co-workers. The axe is coming and no one wants to be cut in this job market. Watch your own back, do not fall for the sticking together crap. The person next to you will do whatever it takes to make his or herself look better than you and try to make you look like you are failing at the same time. This hostile atmosphere will no doubt sink the company. Teamwork will go out the window along with morale.

  17. Jim Hopkins Says:

    @1:10 pm: Gracious, no! I always asked the questions I wanted to — even if I didn’t always like the answers. And I took that buyout because I wanted to — not because I was forced to.

  18. Anonymous Says:

    Hear, hear, 1:40 p.m. That’s exactly what’s happening in my shop — one that has long prided itself on its teamwork. What a croc.

  19. Anonymous Says:

    Springfield has had numerous openings for months that have gone unfilled. Management is huddling behind closed doors today and the feeling is both layoffs and a hiring freeze are on the way.

    Mid-management has abandoned all hope because there is no support from the OC. They are all in survival mode.

    This place is like a morgue. Skeleton crew-like numbers in the newsroom. Deathly quiet as we keep our heads down and hope to hell we don’t get the pink slip, which are expected to come Friday.

    Then again, maybe getting out of here would be the best thing.

    Stay tuned. Should know more soon.

  20. Anonymous Says:

    Sad thing is that after they trim us to the bone they will give us that same shitty smile and the “We’ve got to do more with less. Work smarter, not harder.” bullshit.

    Hey GCI, stick it!

  21. Anonymous Says:

    not just layoffs, buyouts, but hiring freeze and wage freeze here

  22. Anonymous Says:

    Where’s here, 2:02 PM?

  23. Anonymous Says:

    If you survive this round of cuts, do you really want to continue to work in fear of the next cuts down the road. Just get out now if you can, start over.

  24. Anonymous Says:

    Employee vs Employee is happening at my site too. If there is a big project that is successful with many people involved there is always one or two people that want to take all the credit to save their own jobs!!! I hate this place, I expect it will get very nasty in the next few days.

  25. Anonymous Says:

    The problem, to contradict one of my Fort Collins colleagues, apparently, is that many of us DO still care passionately about putting out a quality product. Sometimes I think it would be nice if those who didn’t care moved aside.

  26. Anonymous Says:

    I’m at the Journal News in Westchester. About 12 today got laid off… Classified, addesign, curriers, communications directors.. Etc.
    Thanks Gannett I love working for you! What a horrible company work ethic. I need a new job.

  27. Anonymous Says:

    I’m at the Journal News in Westchester. About 12 today got laid off… Classified, addesign, curriers, communications directors.. Etc.
    Thanks Gannett I love working for you! What a horrible company work ethic.

  28. Anonymous Says:

    The senior editors all just disappeared here, so I assume big news is coming soon in this newsroom.

    Reporters are not speaking a word, though. If they have read the news at all, most probably are plotting to keep their jobs — and no hesitating to think of the ways in which they will sell out their co-worker.

    I’m simultaneously relieved and disheartened to hear the employee vs. employee is not only at my site.

  29. Anonymous Says:

    5:07..where is here?

  30. Anonymous Says:

    11:25

    I believe the 15 getting laid off in Louisville is IN ADDITION TO the 10 in Finance who were already told last week that they will lose their jobs due to the creation of Indianapolis Shared Services.

  31. Anonymous Says:

    We have that atmosphere now in Montgomery, employees are kissing up to management and are stabbing each other left and right to try and keep their jobs. How can management and these employees live with themselves. It’s unbelievable.

  32. Anonymous Says:

    Employee-vs.-employee (really team leader vs. team leader) has always been rampant at my dysfunctional, passive-aggressive, throwing-people (doesn’t matter who)-under-the-convoy-of buses site.

    These are just awful people who have been being awful to each other for 30 years. They smile to each other’s faces, ask about each other’s kids, sometimes socialize – but don’t submit to the hug unless you want a knife in your back.

    It’s just a poisonous, inbred, downright mean culture here.

    And now it’s getting worse. I didn’t think that was possible.

    If I had more than five years with Mamma G to boost the severance, I’d VOLUNTEER for a layoff to get away from these jerks.

  33. Anonymous Says:

    Anonymous said…
    Employee-vs.-employee (really team leader vs. team leader) has always been rampant at my dysfunctional, passive-aggressive, throwing-people (doesn’t matter who)-under-the-convoy-of buses site.

    These are just awful people who have been being awful to each other for 30 years. They smile to each other’s faces, ask about each other’s kids, sometimes socialize – but don’t submit to the hug unless you want a knife in your back.

    It’s just a poisonous, inbred, downright mean culture here.

    Right on, right on! I believe that’s Gannett culture all around. Gosh, I am glad to get out of it real quick.

    Exit interview? What a joke – who would consider comming back to such a company? Sorry, credibility of a company is still a point for me – but to work for Gannett seems silly. They don’t even know the meaning of the word credibility. Self-serving “know nothings” can only bring a company down and they continue to suck the company dry. Jumping ship looks always better.

  34. Anonymous Says:

    You must be talking about brevard!

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