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Healing the Wounds. Overcoming the Trauma of Layoffs and Revitalizing Downsized Organizations. Revised & Updated

  • ID: 2241756
  • Book
  • 272 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Praise for Healing the Wounds

"An outstanding study, a major contribution to business literature."
Publishers Weekly, from review of the first edition

"There are a lot of people out there who are hurting today, and this is a perfect book for dealing with the casualties of today′s economic crisis. This book is a classic more important than ever before."
Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal best–sellers What Got You Here Won′t Get You There and Succession: Are You Ready?

"As a college football coach, the Ten Reframed Commandments represent the professional world I have been living in for the last 18 years as both a manager and an employee. In today′s world, it is crucial that employees and managers in all types of organizations understand these tough realities."
Pete Lembo, head football coach, Elon University

"Millions of laid–off Americans have experienced the feelings Noer writes about. Those of us who work in corporations can find ourselves in this book."
Elizabeth Meadors, manager, employee communications, Apple Computer, Inc.

"David Noer has lived the lives and felt the feelings of America′s riffed, downsized, and professionally dispossessed millions. His book is nothing less than a survival manual for the next twenty years."
Peter Vaill, author, Learning As a Way of Being and Managing As a Performing Art

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1 Forgotten Survivors: What Happens to Those Who Are Left Behind.

Lessons from Act One: Juanita and Charles Victim and Survivor.

The Basic Bind: Lean and Mean Leads to Sad and Angry.

Metaphor of the Surviving Children.

Acts One and Two: A Family Legacy.

Issues to Be Explored.


Learnings and Implications.

2 Changing Organizations and the End of Job Security.

From Assets to Costs: The New View of Employees.

From Nurturing to Violence: The Symbolism of Layoff Language.

From Long Term to Short Term: The Shrinking Planning Horizon.

From Synergistic to Reductionistic: Taking Apart Is Better Than Putting Together.

Layoff Survivor Sickness: The Legacy.

Learnings and Implications.


3 Learning from the Past: The Survivor Syndrome Across Time.

The Saga of No Toes, the Gunslinger.

Universal Survivor Linkages.

Lifton′s Model of Hiroshima Atomic Bomb Survivors.

Learnings and Implications.

4 Speaking for Themselves: Layoff Survivor Stories.

Organizational Characteristics.

Research Methodology.

Job Insecurity.


Depression, Stress, and Fatigue.

Reduced Risk Taking and Motivation.

Distrust and Betrayal.


Continuing Commitment

Lack of Reciprocal Commitment.

Wanting It to Be Over.

Dissatisfaction with Planning and Communication.

Anger over the Layoff Process.

Lack of Strategic Direction.

Lack of Management Credibility.

Short–Term Profit Orientation.

Sense of Permanent Change.

Unexpected Findings.

Learnings and Implications.

5 Time Does Not Heal All Wounds: The Effects of Long–Term Survivor Sickness.

Stress, Fatigue, Extra Workload, Decreased Motivation, Sadness, and Depression.

Insecurity, Anxiety, and Fear.

Loyalty to Job (Not Company), Nonreciprocal Loyalty, and Self–Reliance.

Sense of Unfairness and Anger over Top Management Pay and Severance.

Resignation and Numbness.

Lack of Management Communication.

Helpful and Communicative Managers.

Honest Communication.

Short–Term Plans and Strategy.

Layoff Process Problems.

Resentment Over Being Made to Feel Guilty.

A Look Back from the Second Act.

Learnings and Implications.


6 A Four–Level Process for Handling Layoffs and Their Effects.

Layoff Survivor Feeling Clusters and Coping Strategies.

The Four–Level Intervention Model.

Learnings and Implications.

7 Level One: Manage the Layoff Process.

Clean Kills and the Survivor Hygiene Factor.

Redundant Communication Is Essential.

What to Communicate.

Control Traps That Block Communication.

Balancing Feeling and Thinking.

Tell the Truth, and Never Say Never.

Two Denial Traps.

Process Research.

Learnings and Implications

8 Level Two: Facilitate the Necessary Grieving.

The Burden of a Heavy Bag.

A Team Intervention.

An Attempted Systemwide Intervention.

A Small Business Visioning Intervention.

A Departmental Wake.

Empowering Leaders Through Models of Change.

Learnings and Implications.

9 Level Three: Break the Codependency Chain and Empower People.

Dagwood s Prescient Stand.

Codependent Relationships

Organizational Codependency.


Letting Go.

Connecting with a Core Purpose.

Learnings and Implications.

10 Level Four: Build a New Employment Relationship.

The Global Context of the New Reality.

From Long–Term to Situational Employment Relationships.

From Rewarding Performance with Promotion to Rewarding Performance. with Acknowledgment of Relevance.

From Paternalistic to Empowering Management Behavior.

From Toxic Fidelity to Healthy Self–Responsibility.

From an Implicit Career Covenant to an Explicit Job Contract.

Elements of Explicit Contractual Relationships.

Learnings and Implications.


11 Requisite Leadership Competencies They Don′t Teach in Business School.

Choose the Right Wolf to Feed.

Avoid Layoff Leadership Traps.

Behave Courageously.

Let Go of Outdated Managerial Commandments.

Don′t Listen to Chicken Little.

Learnings and Implications.

12 Rethinking Loyalty, Commitment, and Motivation: The Long and Painful Birth of the New Reality.

Ten Old Paradigm Commandments Reframed.

Putting the Pieces Back Together: Reintegrating the Busted Culture.

Learnings and Implications.

13 Developing the Right Leadership Stuff.

Developing Philosopher–Kings: Learning from Plato.

Intrapersonal Insight.

Interpersonal Confidence.

Core Skills and Relevant Models.

The Global Context of New Paradigm Leadership.

Learnings and Implications.

14 Life After Downsizing: Revitalizing Ourselves and Our Organizations.

The Top Ten New Reality Managerial and Employee Roles.

Fragile Choices.

The Existential Act of Choosing Freedom.

Learnings and Implications.



The Author.


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David M. Noer
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