Kind of an extreme one. But if the chips are down and the company has no other option: a firing round decided by colleagues.
A warning first: you can only do this with a lot of maturity in the organization and a positive, professional vibe among colleagues. Also the salaries have to be transparent beforehand.
First establish what amount of money needs to be cut. Make sure there is no other way to save the organization but to let go of people. Then make sure there are safety measures for the people will be leaving: things like settlements etc.
Let the people in a session write down one, two, three or as many or few names as they can or want to be put on the list of people that need to go.
Write the names down on a big whiteboard, counting the votes and writing the number down next to them. Then arrange the order from most amount of votes to the least. Then write the cost per person down until you have the amount that needs to be cut. This is the first draft of the exit-list.
Discuss with everybody why these people are on the list. Explain it as best you can.
Crosscheck a few times: which people need to stay. Which people are key-players for clients and certain processes.
Then finalize the list and have the exit conversations.
It’s horrible, but fair.
Lennard Toma is an organizational psychologist, writer and speaker at KeytoeY, who helped change the slightly edgy organization Keytoe into the one it is now, with self-organizing teams, full transparency, freedom and trust. He helps organizations to get the most out of people and making sure the organizations create environments where people are more engaged, want to work there and keep working there.
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