Back in November, an eminent construction executive made a presentation at an insurance conference on survival strategies for contractors. Part of his presentation was advice about making layoffs, which was timely. If you look at what U.S. businesses have done in the first phase of the current recession, they have propped up their financial results by cutting personnel. The executive outlined the choices employers face, using a medical term—amputation—for cutting whole departments or units, and a term from 16th-Century warfare—decimation—for cutting a portion of each department.
However, there are two other parts of the issue that did not come up: the moral dimension to employment and a body of research showing that layoffs cost more in the long run than they save.