Thread regarding Pearson PLC layoffs

This is utterly unprofessional...

133 people were on a zoom call. There was a script read, did not look into the camera. It lasted a minute and a half and then they ended the meeting. They put us mute so no one could ask question or cause problems. We have no idea what to do because they did not give us a next step. WE HAVE NO INFORMATION. We have to wait for an email tomorrow to see what our resources were. This companies practices were already becoming sketchy, it will be illegal it 5 years. This was unprofessional and the higher ups should be ashamed of themselves. Always learning, my a–.

Bumped from @1ixx+15oGoARZ for info.

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Post ID: @OP+15pQnw4g

31 replies (most recent on top)

Unfortunately, right sizing is needed to clean up the empires that weak leaders were building over the past few years. It took a few years for people to wake up and realize the group's decline year over year. POLS needed and needs to be rebuilt before they're out of business.

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Post ID: @ghks+15pQnw4g

Kevin, I want to "thank you" for letting me go. I have been an EA for several years. I always gave Pearson 100%. I always made the "realistic" goal. I did everything with integrity. I was also very unhappy. This place used to be a great place to work. We were treated with respect and our voice used to matter. In the past 1-2 years that all changed. Guess what. The V of P DOES NOT work. Micromanaging us DOES NOT work. The new CRM system has so many issues it is ridiculous. I know my worth, yet I kept getting "used to" the new norm. I have had time to reflect back on this company the past week as I update my resume, and you have done me a favor by letting me go. You keep people, and that includes management, who have no clue what they are doing and would be considered incompetent at any other company. That is the real topic for discussion.

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Post ID: @8mls+15pQnw4g

Star awards lol complete popularity contest

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Post ID: @8sic+15pQnw4g

Top performers were laid off because they are paid more. Pearson is trying to cut dollar per dollar by getting rid of expendable positions. You may be a top performer at Pearson but what was that based on? Older business model that is now being replaced by new technology where humans will be replaced by AI. Pearson is as corrupt as the rest of big corporations. Leaders in this company don’t give a hoot about anything but their own pay check. It’s also largely run by white males who are so out of touch with current market trends in performance evaluation and talent management they wouldn’t know top performance if it but them in the a–. Even their HR is corrupt by the most egotistical leader they call a VP. They have some of the most ignorant and just plain stupid people working in HR. I’m someone who was cut recently (not an EA) but am counting my blessings to get away from this sinking ship.

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Post ID: @7iqy+15pQnw4g

Kevin can’t show his lay-off matrix. He used reports that were in accurate and worst of all these were reports ran by mo–ns who then made the decision to cut key performers without consulting the ADRS team or the RMs. The leadership team is so far out of touch and they will soon pay dearly for their poor decisions. The only difference with them and you , they make 3 times your salary and receive a golden parachute when the axe comes down on them! Kevin is lost and will push more and more responsibilities on good people who will become overwhelmed, overworked and under appreciated! Sadly everyone has hit a glass ceiling at Pearson and it is only going to get worse.

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Post ID: @7ofe+15pQnw4g

If Pearson can't make hay with POLS due to the current environment when other OPMs and service providers in that space are cleaning up, there is something very wrong indeed. What is going on over there?

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Post ID: @7fan+15pQnw4g

The simple fact that they fired EAs who are the top performers in their respected APs is BS!! This was all about money and they are aware that certain key APs will be dropping Pearson in the very near future. POLs will be finished soon and now is the time for everyone to look for something else. I was one of the "Key" members of my department and we were lead to believe that we were valuable per Kevin's remarks given to us two days before the layoffs.

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Post ID: @7fcg+15pQnw4g

If Kevin did lay off people due to his supposed "performance "matrix," then you sir are responsible for what happens next with POLS. Your reports were inaccurate, just a snap shot in time. You just think you let your lowest performers go. You are absolutely incorrect, and you will see that your process was flawed. Good luck making your numbers!

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Post ID: @6zfq+15pQnw4g

Has anyone gotten legal advice yet on the way this is being done? There’s some reason why The story keeps changing and the contradiction between what Kevin and SDB said. My guess is that they are either afraid of being honest and transparent or afraid that they have made decisions that violate laws. Why won’t Kevin show this “lay-off matrix”? Sound like smoke and mirrors?

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Post ID: @6nbn+15pQnw4g

I made phenomenal money working at PLS. I was in I bundled syllabi with books and called it a custom edition. No one cared. I stayed at Ritz Carlton Hotels and swilled fine wine for years. I flew first class and never paid for a meal. I got the gout a time or two but it was worth it. I signed projects I knew would never sell and finance paid my six figure bonus against sales that never materialized. It was quite honestly the greatest 10 years of my life. I miss it so much but I so much money, I’m happily retired.

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Post ID: @5xtw+15pQnw4g

Someone is lying. Kevin had meetings with those who were laid off today and said it was due to performance matrix. Interesting because the email from SDB last week completely contradicts that information. Someone is lying. Shame on both of you!!! How do you think that makes top performers, some of which, have won STAR awards feel? You mean to tell me people who were hired this year outperformed people who have been here years and have consistently been high performers. Don't insult my intelligence. You should have just stayed neutal and not said anything. How dare you! For those high performers who were laid off I am so sorry you have to second guess your worth. You will be better off with a company who appreciates you.

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Post ID: @5gvl+15pQnw4g

Don’t kid yourself. ASU and Ed Plus will take over Arby’s too. Haha. They are taking over everything...Starbucks was the beginning of the end. The “evergreen” partnership wasn’t a bonus for Pearson. It was a win for ASU to be able to cut ties. Ed Plus has more than enough resources to take this whole ship on themselves. It’s only a matter of time before all of us are gone. Just like the “partnership” with ASU.

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Post ID: @5fdv+15pQnw4g

There is light at the end of the tunnel. Pearson is said to be teaming up with the Arby’s Corporation to form a new corporate partnership. The Arby's brand purpose is Inspiring Smiles Through Delicious Experiences and happy employees! This won’t makeup for the loss of Starbucks but it sure wont hurt going forward. Thanks to quick thinking by KW and the rest of the leadership team, we will soon have the opportunity to assist employees with the Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. Arby’s We Have The Meats!

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Post ID: @5hjd+15pQnw4g

Those of you asking "is it reps or custom folks" who were let go? - It's not 2003 anymore. You're the embodiment of everyone there who still thinks the shrinking textbook/courseware market is the center of the Pearson universe! The division affected is POLS: Pearson Online Learning Services. Go learn something about the company you work for.

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Post ID: @4wwf+15pQnw4g

Let's not kid ourselves. We were micromanaged every minute of everyday. We were treated like robots. All the decisions were made at the top, but then the ones doing the actual work get laid off. Middle and upper management I hope your day is coming. You have continued to make poor decisions and not do anything when we give you feedback. The good managers have left because they couldn't take it anymore. Andrea is the absolute worst. She talks the talk when someone is watching, but only cares about herself. The fact that she is still there makes me believe that the whole organization is incompetent.

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Post ID: @3bmp+15pQnw4g

For the perso who posted "does personally attacking people make you feel better? I think it just reinforces that the company selected the right people to eliminate. "It's not what happens to you but how you react that matters." - Epictetus" Whereas I don't agree with attacking people that is a VERY insensitive comment to say they selected the right people to eliminate. The first round, yes first round, seems very random. There was no obvious pattern for those who were laid off. Don't worry your day is coming.

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Post ID: @3ehn+15pQnw4g

The best thing to do now is organize a spirit week. Focus on lifting the morale of those who are left. Pajama Monday to kick off the week followed up by Hawaiian shirt Tuesday and wacky hair Wednesday, mis-match Thursday and then email in your silliest face picture Friday. If that doesn’t jump start everyone and breathe some life back into Pearson I don’t know what will then!

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Post ID: @3yhp+15pQnw4g

I'm so sorry this is how you all were treated. Anyone still there really needs to get busy looking for a new career. Good luck to all of you finding a new position/career soon.

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Post ID: @2kww+15pQnw4g

was it reps that were let go or custom folks? I heard both today.

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Post ID: @2zry+15pQnw4g

I absolutely expect you to judge me because I don’t agree with your assessment of the situation. Be angry. Lash out. Spend your energy focusing on things you can’t control. Let me know how that works out for you. OR...you could stop feeling sorry for yourself and put a plan Into action just like my peers who were impacted and who are handling it with grace. I wish the best for all impacted and hope everyone lands on their feet.

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Post ID: @2xil+15pQnw4g

@1zkz+15pQnw4g

You commented "It has happened to me - twice. And, looking back, I ended up somewhere better both times. I never felt the need to lash out and drag people's names through the mud. But then, I'm a mature adult who understands that sometimes bad things happen to good people as a result of necessary business decisions."

That's specially insensitive under these conditions where finding a job might be much more difficult. Plus, loosing healthcare is a possibility because CORBA can be pretty expensive. I don't know who made these decisions, but they have been doing the same thing for the last 6/7 years - so you can't say its a one off thing. Your attempt to defend this mis-management is showing your true colors.

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Post ID: @2pic+15pQnw4g

It has happened to me - twice. And, looking back, I ended up somewhere better both times. I never felt the need to lash out and drag people's names through the mud. But then, I'm a mature adult who understands that sometimes bad things happen to good people as a result of necessary business decisions.

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Post ID: @1zkz+15pQnw4g

"It's not what happens to you but how you react that matters." - Epictetus
You will quote that, until it happens to you.

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Post ID: @1xaa+15pQnw4g

U o P slash and burn method. The higher ups are driving this BU into the ground. They are incompetent, cruel, and never have the student (oh, excuse me learner gross) in mind. It's all numbers, they never take EA feedback or thoughts into account, and anyone who steps out of line is watched like a hawk and then snagged whenever there is one slip-up. This is cooperate incompetency at it's finest. The writing is on the wall folks. Pearson, always burning.

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Post ID: @1dar+15pQnw4g

Most of us here have no idea there were layoffs. I heard from someone outside the company so I peeked here. I still don't even know who was laid off or why the business decision or what group this even was. There's zero transparency.

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Post ID: @1zai+15pQnw4g

Self centered coward- “It’s a business decision”, secret channels, lack of transparency, “don’t ask questions”, “not my fault”, inappropriate actions and behaviors.

Leader- “We are in this together and why”. “These are our options and what we need to work towards”, I/we are accountable for the outcome.

Does it get any clearer? Does there seem to be a pattern?

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Post ID: @1lku+15pQnw4g

As one of the lucky ones spared by the 'bloodbath', I feel for those impacted. However, this was a business decision - one being made by many other companies during this difficult time in our country. I understand the frustration with the way in which the message was delivered; does personally attacking people make you feel better? I think it just reinforces that the company selected the right people to eliminate. "It's not what happens to you but how you react that matters." - Epictetus

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Post ID: @1ldl+15pQnw4g

@wzf+15pQnw4g Honestly? It is impossible to take the layoff personally and it can be dangerous to do so, in terms of your feelings of self-worth.

Honestly? Just going on what you have said, you were probably let go because you HAD been around longer than most and therefore were making more than most.

All of this is just cost-savings, nothing more. It can be a real kick in the pants when you have behaved and performed wonderfully, but the raw truth is that none of that matters when a company is in trouble.

Think of it this way: you may be looking at a short-term future where you will be earning less per week via unemployment than you were while employed with Pearson. Depending on your financial situation, one of your first actions is probably going to involve taking a hard look at your budget and expenditures and make cuts where you can. Those extra little items you throw into the cart at the grocery store? Gone. That pizza you order every Friday? History. It's frozen pizza or homemade for a while. Maybe you cut the "good cable" and go with basic. Perhaps your kid has to make those sneakers stretch a few months longer.

It's no different at the Pearson level. Just as you mean no harm to your favorite pizza place by not ordering from them for a while, Pearson too is seeking to "cut the budget" so to speak - but unfortunately that means people. It stinks and it is certainly not fair, but as I said - it is dangerous and misguided to take their move personally.

Instead, give yourself a while to kind of recover from the shock and to regroup. Apply for unemployment as soon as you can. Get your stuff together resume-wise, etc. Connect with bosses and coworkers and even customers who might serve as good references and ask them if they would be willing to do so. Collect their phone & email addresses, even ask them to write a note of reference if you feel like it. Do your research on good job search techniques, collect your accomplishments. If you do not have them yet, make certain to collect or obtain every performance review from your history with Pearson - they will not share anything with potential future employers, it is all on you.

I have been in your shoes and it just stinks. No two ways about it. And it may take a while to find a position you enjoy and that is as rewarding as your one with Pearson. A good rule of thumb I learned is to expect to spend one month of job pursuit activity for every $10k you make annually. I decided to take a really crummy second shift job (to allow for job interviewing during the day) at a really crummy hourly wage just because I wanted to keep myself on a schedule, I wanted a workplace to report to. Your mileage may differ. Given the health crisis it may take a bit longer than that, but it WILL happen.

Here is a little secret, and there are many, many people reading these words right now that can attest to what I am about to say ... there are GREAT jobs at GREAT companies out there dying to hire someone like you, if your self-description of work ethic, etc. is true. Companies who are not in financial peril. I can tell you, it feels VERY weird to work for a company that actually employs long-term strategy, that has the luxury of truly caring for their employees, who are actually honest with you on team calls and group meetings. There are companies out there that will pay you as much or more than you were making with Pearson, companies that are actually a joy to work for. You're going to have to do a lot of mental and emotional work within yourself to survive the coming weeks and months, but one day you are going to be me. You are going to look back on yesterday and today and you are going to think "that layoff was one of the best things that ever happened to me!"

I am sorry that you have had to go through this, but print this message out and re-read it if/when you need to. For it really is true: the grass truly IS greener and you are going to land back on your feet, happier than you have been in years!

Now you just gotta get there ... and you will:)

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Post ID: @1tra+15pQnw4g

Does anyone know how they chose who to let go? I’ve been here longer than most my teammates and have done well at my job and never been late to work. I volunteer for the charities and ERGs while doing my best to help other people. I was chosen and nobody will tell me why. I’ve never been treated with this kind of indignity and lack of care. I’m really sad and it would help just to know what’s happening and why please.

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Post ID: @wzf+15pQnw4g

OMG- "I can imagine there are different emotions being felt now. Please know you are welcome to take the rest of the day off to process. We will see you back tomorrow."

I really hope they can fix all the problems with the way they rolled out Salesforce, it's been an awful and doesn't work. We keep telling our managers but they say everyone is too afraid to comment on how bad it is and SDB won't listen. Does anyone know if we have the option to take a severance if we just don't want to be here anymore?

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Post ID: @dxh+15pQnw4g

Here is there script.

Business Story
Updated June 5

Message to Impacted Team
As you heard in the recent town hall meetings, POLS is reshaping our organization to ensure we are fit for the future of online learning. The modernization of POLS, with the introduction of Salesforce, allows us to offer an enhanced experience for our learners and better outcomes for our partners.

As a result of these changes your role has been eliminated.

I, along with the entire POLS leadership team, understand this is difficult news to hear. These business decisions were not made lightly.
Over the next few days, HR will be providing resources and detailed information specific to your situation.

During this time of transition, you will be supported, treated fairly, and given guidance on how to see what other opportunities may exist within Pearson.

(For all but Q&T)
I can imagine there are different emotions being felt now. Please know you are welcome to take the rest of the day off to process. We will see you back tomorrow.

Message to Non-Impacted Team
As we continue to make changes to transform POLS and position ourselves in a way that makes us fit for the future of online learning, leaders must make some tough short-term decisions.
Today we notified some of your colleagues that their positions are be ing eliminated. Respectfully, we will not be disclosing the names of people who have been impacted by this business decision. Please know that many will remain an important part of the team for the next few weeks and we are committedtosupportingthemduringthistimeoftransition. Weaskeveryonetobemindfulofthe challenging situation they are in, especially in these emotional times.

As always, POLS pledges to maintain the highest level of support and service to our partners and create an exceptional experience for our learners.

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Post ID: @tpl+15pQnw4g

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