Wednesday, July 12, 2006

You can only escape the axe so often

You can only be lucky enough for the axe not to fall on you so many times, especially in this crazy business we call broadcasting, where staff reductions are an almost regular, almost routine feature. In my 27 years in journalism, 22 of them in broadcasting, I've been lucky enough to have never been laid off... until today.

As part of CHUM restructuring (which, we're told, is a total coincidence to Bell Globemedia buying the company today), I am among about 280 people across Canada who were handed their walking papers today. Some took effect immediately -- such as 47 of my colleagues in Vancouver, one of whom called me from a bar. At A-Channel Ottawa, where I work, a handful were immediate, a few more at the end of August, and the rest -- including me -- as of January 19, 2007. I'll tell you, there was a lot of unabashed hugging and "What the f***?" going on in our newsroom this afternoon. Anyone who says they weren't blindsided by this is either lying or on cheap drugs.

And that's not to criticize management, especially at the local level. Is there ever a right time and/or right way to handle layoffs without looking totally callous? Don't answer that question: it's meant rhetorically.

So I have six months to find another job. In the meantime, I'll weigh all my options, which might even include a different position at A-Channel. My resumé is up to date, and I've never been one to wallow in pity. I would rather pick myself up, dust myself off, and make the best of the situation. Yes, fellow bloglodytes, I'm gonna make lemonade outta this bushel o' lemons!


Ma Horton said...

I am sure by now you are holding up a bar somewhere in Ottawaland . I just got home and read this post and felt so badly for you that I just had to write despite my fatigue .I also believe that when one door closes that another opens for you and without a doubt my friend that will happen to you too .You make the lemonade baby ..and I will sell the timbits .

N@ Lauzon said...

Ah, shit dawg.

Sorry to hear about this Bob..but yeah, I've seen it a zillion times in my bidniz too. You just never know when you're ass is gonna be on the chopping block when you work in media. The good thing is, it's a small industry and you probably know someone who knows someone who knows of a position somewhere with YOUR name on it!

Agreed. Ya gotta make the best of the bullshit - and you've got optimism, talent and your crack habit on your side! :)

I'll keep my ears peeled for ya.

Anonymous said...

Bob, I posted on N@'s site, didn't realize you had one of your own. I am no longer a bobblog virgin...hehe Anyway, I bet you'll have the best damn lemonade in town with a better job than the one you had. I believe everything happens for a reason, and I'm sure there's bigger and better things yet to come....

DianeS said...

I sympathize completely. I just returned from vacation to find out that my area is going to be laying off approximately 30%. I've dodged that bullet for 26 years, but I'm not feeling that optimistic this time. Hopefully, they will let us know fairly soon. I don't think there is much worse than being kept hanging for months.

The good news, I got to meet the fabulous Lene while on vacation.

Doris & Dan Clark said...

Super sucks! But you have a great attitude and I know you will do great!

Keep smilin!

A.K.A. Amazon Woman