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Central Standard

How One Sprint Employee Is Bracing For Expected Layoffs

Julie Denesha

Last week, Overland Park-based Sprint Corp. officials indicated job cuts were coming in the fall.  

The extent of the layoffs at the Kansas company, which employs roughly 7,000 people locally, hasn’t been divulged, but at least one Sprint worker is taking the news to heart.

“Personally, I am cleaning everything out of my cube,” said Peg McMahon, a Sprint employee who responded to our Tell KCUR question of the week.

In response to Sprint’s job news, we asked our listeners, “How do you prepare for a layoff in Kansas City?”  

“I want to be down to just what is on top of my desk by layoff day,” McMahon wrote in an email to KCUR. “Likewise, I am copying every private file off of my laptop so I can turn it in & not lose anything of value to me.”

Since starting at Sprint in 2000, she has survived multiple rounds of layoffs, which she said affects remaining employees emotionally, resulting in a lack of motivation.

“It is almost as bad as being laid off yourself," she said. 

Her comments this week came as Hallmark Cards Inc. cut 47 jobs as part of the Kansas City company’s reorganization, the Kansas City Star reports.  

A former Sprint employee also came forward, offering some of his own insight on layoffs. Including his termination from Sprint, Roger Dusing — author of I’m Fired?!?!, — said he’d been laid off seven times during his 30-year career as a human resources professional.  He now is chief human resources officer at Park University in Parkville, Mo.

When preparing for a possible layoff or dealing with a layoff reality, he advised job-seekers to concentrate on building their professional networks, practicing their elevator speeches to potential employers or colleagues and developing a list of organizations that they'd like to work at.

But perhaps his most important tip? Remember to breathe.

“Getting the news that you’ve been laid off is like getting punched in the stomach,” he said in a message on Tell KCUR’s call-in line.

“So, relax, breathe and know you’ll get through this. You’re losing your job and while that may pose short-term financial issues, you will get through it. Make a job search plan. Work that plan. And you will find a new job.”

Sprint declined to comment on this report.

Tell KCUR is part of an initiative to engage the community and shine a light on your experiences and opinions.  We’ll ask a new question every week and then share your feedback on the air and online. Everyone has knowledge and insight to share. Be a source for KCUR and let us know more about your expertise


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