YOUR OFFICE – Citing revenue numbers that failed to reach projections, consultants from Bain & Company have recommended that your team be mostly eliminated although their retained fees are far greater than the savings they propose. Your managers have agreed to follow through with the layoffs, as their bonus compensation is tied to headcount savings and the cost of the consultants will be charged to another department.
Signs of the impending dooms were not hard to miss; initially, your manager brought an ex-colleague who now works at Bain “just to kick the tires” and tell us what he thinks. However, [Account Supervisor] Susan [Floyd] told you the same thing happened at her last job, and [Executive Assistant] Kevin [Scullin] said same. However, your company is required to procure a full engagement from Bain once a year to justify their multi-million annual retainer fees, an order of magnitude greater than all your team’s salaries, within two weeks, a dozen consultants had been contracted for over a month to “optimize the workforce”.
Although corporate subsidies for employees to take public transportation had ended earlier this year, the consultants traveled to your office over 50 miles a day via Uber because the nearest Four Seasons (the only suitable lodging) is two counties away. Their professionalism and efficiency was commendable, as within hours they were pouring over line items in the first branch of their fixed-costs framework. After crossing out an over-expenditure of Bic pens and other stationary with his personalized Montblanc, the lead consultant, Bill Collins, suggested that future reports be sent only to higher decision makers.
By the end of the following week, you and your team were told that your duties would be absorbed my the Denver office (who would need to hire full-time contractors until the positions are filled). The company was generous to pro-rate a retirement package for Jerry [O’Brien] since he had been here since 1999, but unfortunately all you will be given is a collective Thank You card and a pamphlet about COBRA insurance.
As you and your longtime coworkers hastily pack your desks, your managers will leave early today to celebrate with the consultants over dinner at The Palm.