Thursday, March 12, 2009

The axe is about to swing at the Biloxi Sun Herald (updated -- The Oympian and the Statesman also Monday?)

A tipster tells me Monday is the day the Biloxi Sun Herald will make layoff announcements. No word yet on numbers.

UPDATE: Monday could be the day at The Oympian, too. (And if The Olympian announces Monday, its conjoined twin in Tacoma probably will, too.)

UPDATE #2: Same for Idaho?

UPDATE #3: Employees at Anchorage and Charlotte have been left twisting. Not to mention Lexington and Raleigh.

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39 comments:

Anonymous said...

As a former employee of The Sun Herald, my thoughts are with the fine people who work there as well as the employees at other McClatchy newspapers. The carnage that is occurring is a result of investor greed and corporate pomposity. McClatchy and Knight Ridder were great stand-alone newspaper companies. Double-digit profits weren't good enough for a certain group of Knight Ridder stockholders, and they demanded that the company be sold. McClatchy took on more debt than it could handle to buy Knight-Ridder so it could be one of the big newspaper chains. Now, employees at The Sun Herald - many of them debt-ridden from having to rebuid their homes after Hurricane Katrina - are having to report to work each day not knowing what will happen. That has to be hell. The job cuts should announced before they have to go through a weekend of wondering and worrying.

J. Andrew said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

There are rumors the axe will fall at The Olympian on Monday

Anonymous said...

11:28 AM I've read rambling nonsense before my friend but you take the cake.

Knight Ridder shareholders demanded that the company be sold because they knew that the death of print media was going to be accelerated. That is not shareholder greed. It is good business sense and illustrates the exact way in which a corporation should be run. With shareholders having a voice in the direction of the company.

McClatchy on the other hand is the prime example of how one should not be run. Place blame where blame is due. On McClatchy family, McClatchy managers, directors and policy makers who's arrogance allowed their Ideology and personal whims drive a company in the ground that might well have survived if shareholders actually had a voice in the way the company is run.

Anonymous said...

I would imagine that if Olympia's announcement is Monday, Tacoma's announcement will be Monday, too. Rumor is that those two papers are going to consolidate many things as "cost-saving measures." So what affects one paper will affect the other. Those announcements will have to be made at the same time -- if all the rumors circulating at The News Tribune and The Olympian are accurate, of course.

Anonymous said...

I haven't been seeing much information regarding Anchorage on this blog. Does anyone have any information on what's happening with the Daily News?

Anonymous said...

We've GOT to hear something soon in Charlotte. We've been WAITING since the announcement SIX weeks ago. VERY FRUSTRATING!!!!!! VERY ANGRY!!!!

Anonymous said...

charlotte? the 23rd at the very soonest for some news.

Anonymous said...

I have heard that Lexington will have 58 layoffs.

Anonymous said...

What's the latest from Raleigh?

Anonymous said...

I've heard in Raleigh it's going to be worse than anyone expects. Could come late this week (which would be tomorrow, so not likely) but probably next week. Had been told end of month, but looking like it may be a bit earlier.
Hearing from several longtimers that getting cut would be better than staying behind. Interesting to hear that from the Old Reliable's oldest and most reliable.

Anonymous said...

7:24 -- Yikes.
I've wondered with the merging of Charlotte and Raleigh's Sports and Features departments, whether they would continue the trend. I haven't heard that, but I wonder.

Anonymous said...

Interesting to hear that from the Old Reliable's oldest and most reliable.

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It makes sense. The ones that left first got all the jobs available or the training they needed to move on. The one's that hang on to the bitter end and have not been stockpiling bonuses subject them to the inevitable abuse because management knows they would sell their sister to stay. When they do finally get kicked to the curb, where they going to go? Everyone before them filled all their prospects.

Of course in McClatchy's case, most of what remains is the dry dead wood in the first place. So, the circle completes itself.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 11:28AM, your words are very kind. I can tell you, being from a company that followed similar patterns recently, that it is absolute white knuckle suspense every single day. I imagine the mood there on Monday will be somber at best. No one ever thinks that by reporting to work they are unassumingly playing a supporting character in a really bad slasher movie. My thoughts are with everyone at this company and I hope that as many people as possible can avoid the axe. Hard work and dedication get us where?

Anonymous said...

As an employee of The Bradenton Herald, we are also awaiting our fate! We were supposed to be informed a couple of weeks ago than last week and now next week. We only ask to be kept informed of how things are going but we are still in the dark. Maybe next week we will know. The suspense is killing us!

Anonymous said...

To those who are awaiting their fate at McClatchy papers around the country and speaking as one who found out their fate last week I can say these are deep cuts and in our case cuts where we could not imagine they would/could cut anymore, Editoriol,billing,pressroom and not only just worker bees and mid level management but many V.P's who I know didn't have a clue it was coming as
well. All I can say is expect the worst and hope for the best. And Don't let anyone tell you that you are among the safe this round. There are people who know what you are going through and prayers are with you.

todd said...

9:21pm--thanks for the support---biloxi sunherald

Anonymous said...

Editoriol,billing,pressroom and not only just worker bees and mid level management but many V.P's who I know didn't have a clue it was coming as
well.

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What paper is this? That is not what we are seeing elsewhere. Management, VP's and Editorial have been completely immune except for what you say. You seem to be the exception to the rule.

Anonymous said...

What paper is this? That is not what we are seeing elsewhere. Management, VP's and Editorial have been completely immune ####

I'm am not saying it's happening at every paper theres no way for me to know that I just know it is at mine,it was announced last week and is still being done just today a senior manager with 20+ years was told today that 3/20 would be his last day and there are several in the same situation our editorial dept was cut 20%. I don't wish to argue the fact of good guy/bad guy or who should be let go and shouldn't or who the sorry sob's are that caused all this but I am addressing the reality of the end result. For us the cuts are in almost every dept. high and low and seeing people with 20+ years or more saying goodbye.

Anonymous said...

3 VPs were cut at The State in Columbia, SC. Including Brad Warthen, who had a very popular blog and column, and was one of the few legitimate veteran journalists doing the new media stuff.

Anonymous said...

Managers meeting scheduled for 11:30 in Lexington.

Anonymous said...

Any idea when the Kansas City Star employees will hear if they're staying or leaving?

Anonymous said...

Monday may be the day in Bradenton, but as 9:10 writes above, who knows?

Anonymous said...

9:31 and 11:02 sounds like the action at the FWST......and that blood letting is not really over until the HR tally of papers turned in from yesterday is done. Anyone know when those numerical results are due in?

Anonymous said...

6:22 P.M. -- 58 layoffs in Lexington sounds extremely high since only left with 300+ employees here -- would mean nearly 20 percent reduction!

Anonymous said...

I thought 58 sounded high in Lexington too but then I heard the news side fully expects to lose 20 - so who knows, it could be possible! It would be a ghost town but you never know. How many are here now - you said 300+ anyone have an exact count in Lexington?

Anonymous said...

This has got to be a textbook case of how NOT to manage widespread layoffs. There's no excuse for them prolonging the agony this way, not to mention letting managars get a pass, for the most part.

Anonymous said...

There's no excuse for them prolonging the agony this way, not to mention letting managars get a pass, for the most part.


--------------------------
A) If you are management, scared to death that a group of employees will decide to retaliate with a united job action, what is the best way to prevent it?

Answer: You string it out and leave employees in the dark before springing the news. In the mean time you keep them in check with assorted threats leaving them to believe that there is a chance they might not be on the dinner list.

B) If you are upper management, how do you accomplish mass terminations without exposing yourself to "postal syndrome"

Answer: You maintain a top heavy group of managers to do the dirty work for you. Then when you have reached a desired level of Peon reductions and the threat of receiving a bullet in the head for your efforts has subsided, you then issue remaining pink slips to the people you kept on to do your dirty work.
The remaining managers you've used to do your dirty work are not a threat to your personal safety. These are the people that climbed over the backs of their peers and spent years sucking up to you. These people will remain loyal even after termination because they have burned all bridges elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

Any word on how Advertising Reps are faring in the layoffs? I know no one is immune, but I haven't read much about hits to Sales Reps.

I'm in the NW waiting with baited breath and directions to the unemployment office ( if they will be needed).

Anonymous said...

What I have heard so far is FWST lost one sales manager, at least 2 retail sales reps, and sales was told to go down 2 classified sales reps within the automotive/recruitment/phoneroom group.........don't know for sure if that is final sales count or not.

Anonymous said...

7:09 A.M. -- Lexington presently has about 350 employees.

Anonymous said...

If 350 is right,58 people would be 16.5 percent. Now how outrageous does that sound compared to other McClatchy papers?

Anonymous said...

We don't know for certain yet that the number of cuts will be 58 -- we're still waiting to hear our fate …

Anonymous said...

And they just delayed the meetings that were supposed to happen in Lexington until sometime Monday without telling anyone why. can't be good news.

PaperBoy said...

Todd,Biloxi A wise man you are.

Anonymous said...

have u heard the one about the papa bull and baby bull on the hilltop overlooking a field of cows? well,mcclathcy is the papa bull and we are the cows

PaperBoy said...

Whats up baby bull ?

Anonymous said...

3:23pm---still awaiting word here in biloxi---monday is U-DAY-unemployment day.hope ur safe paperboy from the ill fate that might befall all of us-be well my friend

Anonymous said...

the axe falls in Biloxi