Lessons in Internet Layoffs: Word travels fast

I'm going to write some blog entries about the process I'm going through with Judy's Book. One lesson learned is an obvious one -- word travels FAST in the internet age. Case in point: I announced to the company that we were going to be doing layoffs at 11AM on Tuesday.  By 11:20AM, people were IMing and emailing with past employees. People we hadn't even heard from in a over a year contacted us and asked what was going on. By 3PM, I had gotten an email from 2 reporters asking what the story was. I posted my blog around 4PM and by 5PM, there was a post on both the Seattle PI and techcrunch.
Some things to think about:

  1. That was fast! Imagine any business doing a lay off or winding down 20 years ago and compare it to the story above.   Word may have taken 6 months to travel as far as it did in 6 hours today. Wow!
  2. Don't try to contain a story like this -- all you can do is get out in front of it and hope for the best. Stories and the truth want to be free.
  3. Have a press and blog strategy on the checklist of any layoff you're doing.