According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are nearly 28.8 million small businesses in the United States employing 56.8 million people. In 2013, small businesses alone created 1.1 million net jobs . The impact of small businesses on the American economy is without a doubt monumental.
Despite their positive gains, many small businesses have experienced a recent downfall and are resorting to last-ditch efforts to reduce costs, including downsizing. When considering this approach, there are many ways to prepare and mitigate the backlash of a company downsizing. Businesses can also benefit by creating a plan, which may include the following details :
As the downsizing progresses, there may be many obstacles and challenges along the way. Below are eight (8) categories of consideration for management teams as they adjust to a downsizing :
Readers may have noticed at the top of the list is communication. The communication presented by management should convey to employees the design of the downsizing. It is important for management to communicate what employees need to hear with a continuous and comprehensive approach. Ensuring the dialogue evolves as the downsizing progresses will allow for a smooth transition from crisis to business-as-usual.
Additionally, management may need to partner with human resources professionals to perform many of the remaining categories, such as reallocation of job responsibilities. Detailing these new responsibilities in an updated job description is highly recommended to ensure all operational or administrative tasks are completed.
As managers try to adjust to the new environment, showing consideration to the displaced employee illustrates to retained employees the culture and values of the company. Companies may downsize eloquently by offering transition and job outplacement services, which may include assistance with an employee assessment, cover letter/resume writing, job search/networking techniques, interview skills or one-on-one coaching.
Creative Business Solutions has been intimately involved with numerous downsizings across multiple sectors and understands the stress and emotional difficulties associated with a downsizing, as well as the legal and economic realities. Our professional staff will provide quality services to help reduce the stress and assist with each employee’s job transition in a personal and confidential manner. Please call us today and we will be pleased to assist you with any HR compliance issue you may be experiencing.
 DePriest, Darryl L. "Small Business Profile." 35 (Mar.-Apr. 2016): 3-6. Print.
 "Downsizing: Checklist: Reduction in Force (RIF) Strategy and Selection Checklist." SHRM, 13 Aug. 2014. Web. 19 June 2017.
 "Managing Employees in a Downsized Environment." SHRM, 23 Nov. 2015. Web. 19 June 2017.
Chief Executive Officer
Kansas Electric Cooperatives, Inc.
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