I’ve been in human resources for many years, and one of the things about human resources is that you’re always there for other people, and you’re always trying to help their lives and help them to see things in a different manner, and I guess I’ve always been good from that standpoint. I didn’t want people to be scared. I wanted to create an environment where you look forward to going into work, and you don’t feel pressured and you don’t feel scared or intimidated — that, to me, is my responsibility.
I’ve worked for DST Systems for the past 20 years. The chief operating officer who was retiring left in December [of 2009], and at the first of the year the new chief operating officer went to the board of directors, and he convinced them that the company needed to go through this reorganizing and restructuring. It was kept quiet somewhat, but I could tell that something was changing. I knew something was going on.
It was hard through the holidays to know this stuff; I didn’t say anything to my family, because I didn’t want them to be worried about it — but yet, deep down, it was hard to be happy knowing I was going to be out of the picture. I would say that probably during that November time period until it actually happened in February were some of the harder times in my life.
My actual date was February 4th of 2010. It was a Thursday. I still remember it very well. They had started on that Monday, and they had said that if you survived until Friday, that you were safe with this first round of layoffs. And so I got my call at 9:30 a.m. to come into a conference room.
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