Letter From the Chairman
Dear Employees: As you know, your efforts to further enrich the executive team have fallen woefully short of inflated expectations. In an effort to wring any remaining blood out of our corporate turnip, the company will be sold at auction immediately. Please be aware of the following.
Financial enhancements: So as to appear solvent to bidders, Finance has created several paradigm-shifting initiatives. Retroactive to January 1, employees will be assessed a $25-per-diem desk-rental fee and a one-time $100 security deposit, which may be refunded in lieu of a future severance package. In addition, all individual telephone and electrical charges will henceforth be billed directly to employees.
Benefits: We understand that in times of uncertainty, employees may seek to avail themselves of our generous corporate benefits by finally scheduling that bypass operation, getting wisdom teeth yanked, or, most egregious, joining the gym. To prevent panicky workers from "gaming the system," Human Resources has been directed to suspend all benefits until further notice.
T&E reimbursement: Starting immediately, all nonexecutive expenses, including pending submissions, will not be honored. Funds freed up by this move will be placed into an unregulated offshore "Relaxation Fund." Members of our hardworking senior management team may draw from it at their discretion during this particularly difficult time. (Exec team: Our annual golf outing at Hilton Head is on! Regrets only to my assistant.)
Staff monetization: We have long said that people are our most important asset. Soon, that once-empty aphorism may finally yield results. If a buyer cannot be found, the Company may elect to auction off individual employees on eBay. In an entirely unrelated matter, if you have not yet signed the Company's mandatory human-rights waiver, please do so and return it to the HR department no later than Friday. Failure to do so may result in harsh disciplinary action.
A version of this article appeared in the August 2005 issue of Fast Company magazine.