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It looks like the decision is being made for me

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Last night my assistant manager gave me a heads up that staff who can't work a certain number of hours per week (anywhere from 12-16) will be laid off. I am one of those staff members who could be laid off. I accepted a full time (unpaid) internship at a city newspaper and was trying to figure out how to hold on to my job.


At first I was angry to hear that they are going to do this, but now I'm a little bit relieved, because I really didn't want to be working 7 days a week during the summer and then launch into a fall semester where I'm working full time at the school paper and taking a full courseload PLUS trying to hang on to my part time job. It also feels like a big FU though. I've worked really hard and I do like most parts of the job. It doesn't make sense to me why an employer at a grocery store would alienate students.

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It's not about alienating students, it's about business... and if they have to cut someone, it makes sense to have fewer people with short hours, and to reward the people willing to put more of their time into the company by them getting to keep their jobs as opposed to students who are only doing the work to 'fill in' until they start their 'real' careers.

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If they have a bunch of people unwilling to work 20 hours, think how much time they have to spend arranging to make sure all their shifts are covered. Phone calls. Rearrangements. Replacements when someone falls through. Enough people each day if some are only working 2 or 3 hours a day. If you're talking 3 people working 20 hours each, vs 6 people working 10 hours each, that's half the work and half the headaches trying to keep the shifts filled.

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Wow, rude responses. I've worked really hard at my job and school and yah, I am not going to be a lifer, but I deserve more respect than that. I'm on my boss' speed dial. If someone is sick, I offer to come in to help the rest of them out. I may not work 20 hours per week, but I have been a very hard worker and contribute to the business.

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Wow, rude responses. I've worked really hard at my job and school and yah, I am not going to be a lifer, but I deserve more respect than that. I'm on my boss' speed dial. If someone is sick, I offer to come in to help the rest of them out. I may not work 20 hours per week, but I have been a very hard worker and contribute to the business.


It may be a decision brought down from someone above your boss. Its about priorities. If you really want to keep this job, then you work the hours they want you to work even if that involves working more than 8 hours a day between the internship and the job. if the job is not important to you, then let it go. Sometimes just a little effort - like being available consistently 16-18 hours versus 12-14 might show a little initiative to put you above other part time folks.


I would agree that they would want to retain the people who this is a full time job for and try to keep those people first before they fill in with folks who are more part time. The comment about being a "lifer" is sort of the atitutde I think folks are talking about. You might work hard - but for some people this is the job they have to feed their family and its not a joke.


I think that if you do get laid off - you should let them know that there are no hard feelings and you are willing to fill in if the need arises so that you get a good reference from them in the future or leave the door open for you to come back some day.

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sherry, I urge you to do some research. There is SO much data out about your generation that it has spawned an entire research agenda...based on the fact that you were raised on the theme that you want what you want and you expect it now...and get pissed off when you aren't immediately recognized for your contribution.


How about you also do some research on the American Depression? The people who lived through those 20 years owned ONE OUTFIT; if they were rich, they had a dress to wear to church. If they were lucky, they owned ONE PAIR OF SHOES. And had ONE MEAL a day. And they took ANY JOB THEY COULD GET, be it cleaning someone's toilet or cooking someone's pancakes, as long as they could earn 50 cents to buy their children something to eat that day.


I'm sorry if you came here for commiseration, but frankly, I'm tired of reading about people who are put out because they work a whole 15 hours a week and aren't appreciated.


I deserve more respect than that
You don't deserve anything from that job. Except a paycheck. They don't OWE you anything. YOU ASKED FOR A JOB FROM THEM. And then set YOUR requirements on how many hours you were willing to work. While someone else out there, desperate for ANY work to buy food for their kids, didn't get the job, and had to keep looking.
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No amount of loyalty or hard work will prevent you from getting cut by a business decision. It's just the reality of employment these days. Your employer is not your friend. At least you get to learn this earlier than later. I've seen loyal, hard working lifers, get laid off after 20 years, it is not a pretty sight.

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I said I was angry at first, not that I'm still angry. I get it, I do. It's numbers, it's business. All I wanted was a little bit of compassion in return for the compassion I give others. This time I need some.


I have really liked this job and it would have been nice to get a little "oh, I'm sorry that your job is in trouble"


NOT "kids these days expect everything handed to them on a silver platter." You don't have any idea who I am or how hard I work on a daily basis. Before I went back to school, I worked three jobs at a time, so I KNOW how hard it is. No, I don't have kids. That doesn't mean that I am any less worthy of a stable job to help me get through school. When I was hired at this place, I told them what I needed, and I told them what I could and couldn't do.


You know what's worse than having a student loan? Trying to study, but you can't because there's no food in your cupboard. Not having clothes to wear to a job interview. Been there. Not there anymore thank god, thanks to the $40,000 I'll owe when I'm done school. Crazy me for trying to work a few hours a week to balance that out! How self-important of me!


Do YOU get up at 3:45 to work a morning shift and then work until 10 pm the next day? Well I do. Then I come home and do homework and study and apply for scholarships. I've worked hard and to be treated like a number sucks, and I'm allowed to feel that way.


Contrary to popular belief, students have to pay bills too. I've been on my own since I was 18 and I have bills, I have to eat, I have rent. Yes, I am aiming for a different career, but in the meantime, somehow I've gotta survive, right?


Yes, I have taken history courses and global studies courses. I'm aware that way back when, people had it worse. I'm aware that right now, others have it worse. That doesn't take away my right to be upset when a job I work hard at is taken away for numbers' sake.


This brings back memories of when my dad was laid off after 20+ years at a logging company. Four kids, a wife, and laid off, just like that. It hit him hard. No, life just isn't fair sometimes, but I'm allowed to feel shocked and upset.

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I know it is hard to think of it this way, but a business is not a family, unless you work for a really small company.


I think people are trying to help you understand that you should try not to take it personally because business priorities are about doing what is right for the business and looking at all the different people available to work and making the right choice as to who should be given opportunities to stay based on the business needs.


That doesn't mean they didn't really value you or the work you did, but if they have to make a hard choice between who stays and goes, they are going to choose the people they think are most committed to the business (in terms of how often/much they work) and who will most likely stay with them in the long run vs. temp employees. Part timers and temp workers always fall lower on the totem pole in a business situation, that is just the reality of it, and they are the first to get cut if times get hard. Y


So you may have made a very nice contribution and employee for the company, but if they can't afford all the workers, they are going to let the part timers go first, and the fewer the hours you work, you are most likely to go first.


Plenty of us have been thru school and working at the same time and understand how tired you are etc., BUT that doesn't change the reality of how business works, and you'll cause yourself less distress if you don't take it so personally and recognize that is how business works.


And i worked a 20+ hour job when in school fulltime for 4 years, and worked a fulltime job while a graduate student. So my sympathies are with you in terms of how tired you can get from that, but honestly, getting mad at this is like getting mad that one gets a sunburn if you lie out in the sun for 5 hours... there are certain realities in life, and of course you can feel shocked and upset, but also recognize that you are just working yourself up, and that is the way business works, so it is best to always be prepared by making sure you save money to go thru times of layoffs.


In today's business world, layoffs are the norm and not the exception, so everyone has to make sure they have a financial plan in place to deal with it (i.e., a cash cushion that will carry them long enough to survive a layoff), and to not get too emotionally attached to any job, since layoffs are a common business practice. In a perfect world it wouldn't be that way, but it just is.


So focus on what new opportunities you have, and let this experience help you understand that there is truly no such thing as a permanent job in today's world, so your first task when you get out of college is saving 6 months worth of expenses, so you are protected in future against another layoff.

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I've been in the workforce for a while now and I've been around so many lay-offs that it doesn't even register emotionally for me anymore. It's kind of sad. I hope you won't ever get as jaded as me.


It does suck your job is in jeopardy, but you haven't been laid off yet, and with any luck you won't be. Sure, it's a numbers thing but remember it's not just the amount of hours, it's also what hours those are. You're willing to work at 4am? How many people are willing to do that? They'd be nuts to let someone go who would be willing to do those hours. Hopefully they realize that.


One of the best things you can do for yourself is what lavenderdove suggests. Position yourself to protect against a lay-off. It's tough, if not impossible, when you're a student. And it's still tough when you graduate, especially with a huge debt load. 40K is humongous in my opinion, and the frightening thing is it's not all that uncommon. Well, there goes 5 years or so paying off your student loans, welcome to your new career, err sorry, I meant indentured servitude.


Once you break that barrier where you're debt free and have substantial savings though, it's like having a whole new life. The day you realize that you can walk out the door laughing because you got laid off, priceless.

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I wish we had been saving. At the department meeting not two weeks ago, the store manager swore that there would be no layoffs so I relaxed, and we spent, and spent, and spent in the last few weeks, sure that we were good to go once the bf starts his new career in a couple of weeks. Now we're facing a summer where it's just my bf working and I may not be contributing anything to the household and we've severely reined in spending. If you warned me 6 mos ago to save 6 mos worth of pay, I would probably have thought "yeah right, I work in a grocery store. Everyone needs food! They're not gonna lay me off." How very naive of me


Now I know. At least I have bigger and better things to look forward to, career-wise. I'll actually be working towards my goals instead of just making a paycheck.

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Another good reason to have a 3-6 month cushion saved is if you ever get a terrible boss and need to quit, you do not feel like a slave to has to put up with any kind of mistreatment.


I had a truly sadistic boss once, who enjoyed torturing people and mind games, and i was in a precarious situation where i had no savings and couldn't afford to quit the job, and the job market was bad at the time so trouble finding work. I thought i was going to have a nervous breakdown if i had to keep working for this guy for too long, so from that experience, i learned that money in the bank is freedom as well as financial protection, in that if you get in a situation where the job turns ugly, you are not trapped in an awful job you can't afford to quit.


So i think this will be one of those experiences for you, where you learn that a job can be lost at any time, even if you're a good worker, so in future keep your options open and keep a cushion in the bank at all times just for cases like this.

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one other comment on what one of the posters said...


if you have student loans, make the minimum payments until you have that cash cushion in place. That cash cushion is your first line of defense and should be the first money you set aside when you get out of college.


Student loans have low interest rates, and if you lose your job you can usually get them to postpone payments until you get a new job, so don't try to be debt-free by totally paying off student loans before you save the cash cushion... get the cash cushion in place first and never touch it except in times of unemployment, then start paying off all your debts.


People will sometimes make the mistake of taking all their cash and paying off debt in order to be debt free, they they suddenly are in trouble when they lose a job and have no cash to pay rent etc. So that cash cushion is first priority, then other things come after.

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At some point you would have left them. I doubt they would think you did them wrong if that happened. You were planning on leaving as soon as you got the money you needed, right? You didn't want to work part time anyway, as you explained it. I think people are probably confused that you feel they wronged you, and I don't believe anyone was rude but just telling it like it is.

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