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January 16, 2009
With A Straight Face, Yet
Well, the researchers at Pfizer have apparently been told that the latest round of layoffs are it, but I get the impression that this reassurance isn’t necessarily widely believed. People there (and at other companies) have been told that everything is rightsized and on track before the ax comes around again. I certainly hope that this time it’s true.
But the sales force doesn’t look to be as lucky, since the latest report is that up to one third of the sales reps might be laid off. That’s always been a volatile part of any company, with a lot of turnover, but man, that’s a lot of turnover. It puts the 8% cut in research into some perspective, but what a nasty perspective it is.
And in the research labs – well, I know that executives are supposed to say these sorts of things. And I know that if you don’t, they’ll find someone who will. But I still have to pass on this quote from Pfizer’s head of research, Martin MacKay, which as far as I can tell was delivered with no grimaces or coughing fits:
"“We haven’t taken any hit on productivity. We haven’t missed any milestones,” MacKay said. “We are keeping the organization fully focused on the work we have to do.”
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