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Thursday, June 23, 2016

All Hands On Deck

For those of you who are not familiar with the term "All Hands On Deck", it is a common Navy or Merchant Marine term of a call for public gathering.



We know that we have people in many different situations. Some have been laid off in 2015 and have experienced a full gamut of changes to their lives. Others have only been exposed to the reality of separation from their employer for a few days. Since the current official policy of Intel Corp. is that layoffs would continue to take place through 2017, we are expecting that our community will continue to grow at a significant rate.

Based upon the experience of people who were laid off in 2015, when the number of affected people was relatively small, it is highly likely that people laid off in 2016 would be facing unemployment for an extended period of time. This may not be the message that you care to hear; however, it is likely to be the reality that you will need to contend with. Of course, I will be happy for you if you prove me wrong by swiftly becoming employed again.

If you take a constructive approach to reviewing our situation, you must recognize that once you are laid off you are not in imminent danger of falling into poverty, overnight. Your severance pay, unemployment compensation, and COBRA (continuation) medical insurance provide you with a buffer to cushion the blow. If you have INTC stock account, you could always liquidate all or part of your stock holding to cover needed cash. Typically, if there are tax consequences to selling off your stock, they are not very significant if your annual income level is low. Some of the articles on this web site cover these issues. Look at the Finance section button at the top of the page.

Of course every person's situation is different. You need to learn how to manage your finances in a way that will permit you to stay afloat, by cutting or lowering expenses, reducing investment risks, and navigating through the best choices available to you for stretching your savings. Regardless, fear of the unknown is likely to be your main source of stress and you will need to learn how to cope with it, as some of us who live in this reality since July 2015, have done and are still dealing with.

For those of you who were employed at Intel Corp. for a long time, the task of facing an employment world, which does not run by the "Intel Rules" could be a much greater challenge. Getting used to terms, procedures, and requirements that are used by smaller and much more diversified businesses requires you to become more agile and learn how to cater to the needs of such potential future employers. By nature, smaller companies serve smaller and much more focused markets. Learning about your new employment possibilities is important to understand your options. The Job Search section of this web site lists many resources that could help you expand your horizons. In addition, we have volunteers who are willing to share their experience with you to expedite your learning.

It is very likely that among the thousands of people who were and are going to be laid off from Intel Corp., there are quite a few who have the skills necessary to help their colleagues in the transition to alternative employment or retirement. I am calling upon people who a willing to volunteer their help to contact us and specify the areas of their expertise. Once we have the resources sorted out we could begin conducting workshops for sharing knowledge and experience to the benefit of all.

Another beneficial mechanism could be organizing a database of people alongside their skills. These skills do not necessarily need to be associated with their Intel background. Skills still have exchange value if we can adapt the model of a circular economy. For example, if I am looking for a saxophone tutor, I may be able to pay back by teaching programming, or welding, or car repair, or interviewing skills, or how to run your own small business successfully, or how to build your own "drone" from scratch. Keeping yourself busy while you are unemployed, in activities other than job seeking has a very positive therapeutic value.

Your comments are welcome.

--Dr. Flywheel


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