Word moved around quickly at work that all the leased workers, contractors, and consultants in R&D had been let go. The reply from most of the full-timers was warm and polite but it was odd to see who spoke first. The kitchen staff, mailroom staff, and some of the secretaries offered their condolenscences before most of the engineering staff. Maybe this was because these groups were well connected or maybe it was out of fear for their own jobs. People in ancillary positions may feel slightly more fireable compared to those related to core competencies.
Airing the sentiment of “you’ve been fired, I’m sorry” is a tough one but most people muddled through it as if a death had happened. Voices were hushed and groups broke up quickly after forming. I felt a slight indignity at the idea of “we don’t talk about this”. If you’re firing me, at least have the courtesy of keeping us informed.