Imagine trying to figure out how your life is going to change 30 days from now without having all the pieces of the puzzle. That is basically what is going on for everyone at Chrysler, and I imagine to some extent those at GM as well. Not much work is getting done as everyone tries to figure out what they will do once (or if) the retirement packages come out.
We have been told the basics of the offerings but have not seen the specifics. Some will have a cash and car option, others will be eligible to start receiving their pensions early. If you turn down a package there is no guarantee that you will still be employed at the end of the year since they announced a 25% reduction target. But most people think we will get a take rate above that.
With GM cutting their maximum layoff benefit everyone assumes that Chrysler will follow suit and may even do so this year. So those who may be let go may not get the amount of severance pay they had planned on when making their decision to stay.
Most people have spent the last week discussing the latest rumours, asking everyone else what they plan on doing, and even using the Internet to look for new jobs. If you do go to a meeting it usually turns into a discussion of what is going on. Plus people are asking what is the point of talking about business when many of the people needed to make changes may be gone in a month.
The fear of those who may choose not to go is who will be left to do the work that is needed to have the company continue to run? If all of the experts leave, the company may implode or cease to operate for a while while those who remained get shuffled into new positions and pick up new or additional responsibilities.
We are supposed to find out the contents of our packages by November 5th, with decisions due by the 26th, making the last day with the company November 30. Since the Thanksgiving holiday starts on the 26th, that will be last day for a good many employees I'll bet. And many will probably wait until that day or a day or two before to make their decisions known.
Stay tuned for more info as the saga continues.