How to Restructure Your Team After Layoffs

This year of 2022 continues to present a challenging business environment in the U.S. with 850 tech companies layoff 140,000 employees so far. The economy is in uncharted territories where many are feeling the squeeze between inflation and deteriorating market conditions. Some are struggling to make ends meet. It’s been a tough year for everyone whether you are someone that has just been let go, or part of the remaining team trying to pick up the pieces after the fallout. Uncertainty is always scary and restructuring your team after layoffs can be a daunting challenge, but it’s important to try.

Before we go on, one for you, on for me…

Dr Evil pouring one for the homies
<credit: Dr. Evil>

Here are some essential tips to help your team take on one of the biggest challenges in your company’s history.

Communicate why layoffs happened

First, ensure that everyone understands why the layoffs happened and what the company is doing to prevent them in the future. Whether this is a written message to employees The company needs to be very transparent about why the layoffs happened and what measures are being put in place to prevent them from happening again in the future. Employees need to feel like they are part of the solution, not part of the problem. The company should also look at ways to improve morale and build a better work environment. This will help to attract and retain top talent, which is essential for any company’s success, especially following a large loss of talent.

Restructure tasks

After a large layoff, it is important to restructure tasks so that everyone knows what they are now expected to do. This may include changing job descriptions, creating new teams, or reassigning project responsibilities. By doing this, you can ensure that everyone understands their new roles and responsibilities and that the work can continue smoothly. Additionally, this will help to avoid any confusion or frustration that could come from not knowing what is expected of them.

Reinforce hierarchies that may have been damaged

After a large number of layoffs, it can be confusing for remaining employees to know who to report to. This is because managers and team leads may have been moved or laid off as part of the restructuring. In these cases, it is important for employees to stay in communication with their human resources department (even if HR automation software is used) so that they can be aware of any changes in the reporting structure. Additionally, employees should try to build relationships with their co-workers so that they can support each other during this time of transition. By supporting each other, they can make this time a little bit easier for everyone. So encouraging them to reach out to their co-workers, get to know them, and see how they can help each other through this time will do wonders for not only productivity but team morale and employee retention.

Re-build team morale

Next, focus on rebuilding trust and morale within the team. It can be difficult to maintain morale during tough times, but activities both inside and outside of work can help. Things like social events or even just talking to each other can also help keep spirits high. Whatever you do, make sure you keep communication open and stay positive—it’ll make a world of difference. Team escape rooms can help build morale and trust among coworkers by placing them in a fun, yet challenging environment with one another.

Sonar escape room in SF

A team escape room is an immersive, real-world puzzle game in which players are locked in a room and must use teamwork to solve a series of puzzles and riddles in order to escape the room within a set time limit. Placing your team together in an out-of-work environment, allows them to bond with each other and make connections which will increase productivity by having workers who are happy to come back to the office, or even help anyone who lost friends during the transition.

Encourage communication and team-bonding

Encouraging open communication and collaboration among team members is important for several reasons. First, it allows team members to bond with one another, which can lead to increased trust and understanding. Second, it can help prevent conflict by giving team members a chance to air their grievances and come up with creative solutions together. Finally, it can boost morale and productivity by creating a sense of camaraderie among team members. Making it a point to praise good teamwork when you see it happening can do wonders in this regard. By taking these steps, you can create an environment where open communication and collaboration are the norms, not the exception.

Try to avoid promises that you’re unsure of meeting

When laying people off, it’s easy to promise those remaining that there won’t be any more layoffs to try and retain employees. It’s easy to promise those remaining that there won’t be any more layoffs when you’re laying people off. You might try to do this to retain employees, but it’s not always possible to keep that promise. Sometimes, circumstances change and you have to make tough decisions. If you’re honest with your employees, they’ll appreciate it and understand that you’re doing what’s best for the company. Making promises you aren’t sure whether you can keep could also be dangerous should layoffs come again, as employee trust will severely crumble.

Keep people aware of the future & what’s next

Finally, make sure that everyone is aware of the company’s goals and how they can help to achieve them. Encourage employees to ask questions about the company’s objectives and their role in achieving them. Keep the lines of communication open so that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goal. Achieving company objectives is a team effort, and everyone needs to be aware of their part in making it happen. Let them know that they can come to you with any concerns or questions they have. By creating an open and supportive environment, you can help your team to heal and move forward after a traumatic event.