My Friend Got Laid Off at His Game Company

dilbertThe game industry is fast moving and it sometimes can be hostile if you happen to actually work in the field. I just recently found out that one of my good friends has just been laid off from his game job.

I know it’s corporate procedure to lay off guys without warning. Someone, somewhere wrote a manual that stipulates that getting rid of employees this way–without any hint or clue to the worker, is the best way to do it. He or she is unceremoniously asked to pack their things in a box and is escorted out the door by security within hours of notification.

Doing it this way is "safe" in the eyes of the company because the former employee is still in shock and cannot retaliate against the company–if he/she wanted to do so. This method, while it may work for corporate America, seems to be totally out of place in the game industry.

Why? Close bonds with people are made in the game industry that I have not seen in many other job environments. People in production work closely together and the many hours of pain and suffering that are involved in getting a video title out usually forms close relationships and friendships. When you sometimes end up spending more time with your co-workers than your family, the forming of these tight bonds are not unusual.

Imagine if someone was on life support and the hospital decided to stop it without warning. "Oh, sorry, we’re going to take you off of the breathing machine today. Don’t let the door hit you as you leave…"

I’ve seen tears and crying as these close connections have been ripped away with the news of co-workers being given the boot. Ironically, the game industry is a business where the number one objective is to make it fun for its customers. But behind all the blood, sweat and tears of these games are the dedicated folks who produce them–so that the public can have a few hours of entertainment and pleasure.

Surely, game companies could treat their employees differently than the rest of cooperate America. People who have worked so hard in trying to make the lives of others more enjoyable should certainly get more respect when they need to be let go.

Saying, "You’re laid off. Leave right now," just doesn’t seem to cut it as far as treating your loyal staff with dignity. It’s about as subtle as a drive by shooting.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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