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Almost 12 years…

November 10, 2009

“Mandatory All-Staff Meeting – 11:30am”

That was the e-mail that popped onto my screen at 10am yesterday morning. We all knew it was not good. But we had no idea how bad it was going to be.

At 11:42am, our CEO came in looking solemn and the room fell silent. He didn’t mince words. It’s over. The company is shutting it’s doors. We are all unemployed as of January 29th, when our contract ends with our client. Roughly 90 people in our office, and 495 people in our Detroit office. There was a brief Q&A period that was fairly short on the A’s, they don’t know all the details themselves yet. We were then told we could go home and come back ready to work the next day.

The news hit the Detroit media by 4pm. It was on the Wall Street Journal’s web site, and the 6pm news on Detroit television. Today, it’s everywhere in the local media as well. My phone has been ringing. Friends are calling to offer support. I have also been getting kind words and emails from friends who follow me on Facebook and/or Twitter.

It still doesn’t feel completely real. I’m familiar with the emotional stages of all this. I’ve done it before, mind you that was 14 years ago. If you’ve been following me for a while you know that we thought this might happen last year.  It didn’t of course, and somehow now, when things were starting to look up, it’s suddenly over.

So now what? I don’t know. I have just under three months to get my financial ducks in a row, and potentially a severance agreement might give me a little more breathing room. There are no details available yet on that.

I dreaded having to tell Kelly the news.  She has been through so much recently.  She has enough on her mind and I want her to be able to focus on school. Not surprisingly however, she took the news quite well. She is, as always,  incredibly supportive. Her faith in me, combined with the coping techniques I have learned from her, are helping me stay calm.

Around the office today, very little work was accomplished. Small groups huddled together. Quiet conversations recounting what discussions were had with significant others the night before. There were more tears. There is plenty of apprehension. There is anger, lots of anger.  There is denial.  But mostly there is sadness.

I’m not sure what else I can say at this point. Certainly I will have more news as it becomes available. Stay tuned.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. November 10, 2009 7:57 pm

    Recently losing my job too, I can relate. The feeling that it just isn’t real is going to last awhile. You are going to go through so many emotions and probably not know how to deal with them-at least, that’s what I went through.

    Having said that, I am sorry that you are going through all of this. It is the suck for sure.

  2. November 10, 2009 9:06 pm

    I have known all day but read the details here just now and called Mark and told him too. We are both very sorry, Sylvain. Again if there is anything we can do please let us know. Also, we have Skype to talk, just so you know. xo, O

  3. Kate permalink
    November 10, 2009 11:48 pm

    Sylvain: I’m so sorry.

  4. November 11, 2009 9:18 am

    Very sad news. I’m sorry to hear this but hope that the time they’ve given you and the severance will help you weather the storm until our injured city recovers.

  5. Lynn permalink
    November 11, 2009 10:36 am

    Not sure what words help at a time like this.
    I hope the severence package is a good one
    & then perhaps you can make plans to fullfill some dream
    (further education I think you mentioned in the past???) and go for it
    for an even more fullfilling future.
    I like to think that one closed door
    allows for another even better one to open for you.
    Just wish this all could have happened in a less painful way for you
    and all the others.
    Sending hugs and hopefulness.

  6. November 11, 2009 4:40 pm


  7. Mary permalink
    November 12, 2009 8:35 am

    Thinking of you. For me, the hardest part is riding out the job and hearing the office buzz when I’d rather focus on the work at hand. Deciding what to do next can be a creative and engaging process. Wishing that for you!

  8. honorarynewfie permalink
    November 15, 2009 6:13 am


    Picked up on this from Kelly’s blog. Can do nothing but wish the pair of you luck and agree with what Mary says.


  9. Kate permalink
    November 29, 2009 4:37 pm

    Just to let you know that I’m still thinking of you and missing you here and on V’s blog.


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