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BMW To Cut 850 Jobs At Oxford Mini Plant: [Workers Booed and Threw Apples And Oranges At Managers]
London Times ^ | February 16, 2009

Posted on 02/16/2009 10:07:39 AM PST by Steelfish

February 16, 2009

BMW to cut 850 jobs at Oxford Mini plant

Marcus Leroux and Jenny Booth

BMW, the German vehicle maker, today announced plans to lay off 850 weekend agency staff at its Mini factory in Cowley, near Oxford, as the slowdown in demand for cars worsens.

Agency workers leaving Cowley this morning expressed their anger at being given just one hour’s notice of losing their job. The company made the announcements just as the staff affected were finishing their shift.

"It’s a disgrace. I feel as though I’ve been used. We should have been given one month’s notice, not one hour," said one worker.

John Cunningham, who has worked at the factory for more than two years, said he felt betrayed. "We’ve been given a week’s pay for an enforced week off, which I suppose is a week’s notice. I don’t know what’s going to happen to me and my family. It’s very scary."

Union sources said workers booed and threw apples and oranges at managers after being told the news.

(Excerpt) Read more at business.timesonline.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: automakers; bmw; booed
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1 posted on 02/16/2009 10:07:39 AM PST by Steelfish
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To: Steelfish
"It’s a disgrace. I feel as though I’ve been used. We should have been given one month’s notice

Why? So they could REALLY trash the place?

2 posted on 02/16/2009 10:09:36 AM PST by Fido969 ("The hardest thing in the world to understand is income tax." - Albert Einstein)
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To: Steelfish

OK, make it an even 1,000 jobs.


3 posted on 02/16/2009 10:09:36 AM PST by Attention Surplus Disorder (Mr. Bernanke, have you started working on your book about the second GREATER depression?")
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To: Steelfish

As if BMS wanted to do this.....(eyes rolling)


4 posted on 02/16/2009 10:09:52 AM PST by Badeye (There are no 'great moments' in Moderate Political History. Only losses.)
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To: Fido969

That was an unprofessional thing to do. They could have given the courtesy 2 week notice.


5 posted on 02/16/2009 10:10:29 AM PST by DonaldC
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To: Steelfish

LOL! If you’re gonna buy a BMW product, buy a real one. :0)


6 posted on 02/16/2009 10:10:33 AM PST by alice_in_bubbaland (WELCOME TO THE OBAMANATION!!!!! Markets and Marxists Don't Mix!)
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To: Steelfish

I’m sure there were valid reasons for cutting these people, but an hour’s notice is bullsh*t.


7 posted on 02/16/2009 10:10:50 AM PST by reagan_fanatic (Dissent Is Patriotic!)
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To: Steelfish

Apples and oranges? I guess they didn’t get the memo. The chic thing to do these days is to throw your shoes.


8 posted on 02/16/2009 10:12:32 AM PST by FlingWingFlyer (Have You Punched A Democrat Today? - Do it for the children.)
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To: Steelfish

I never gave notice to anyone I fired.

It was obvious when I handed them 2 checks in the middle of the week if it was after wednesday or one check between monday and wednesday.


9 posted on 02/16/2009 10:12:52 AM PST by dalereed
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To: Attention Surplus Disorder
OK, make it an even 1,000 jobs.

No. When the job cut plan was first drafted, the initial plan was to cut 525 jobs. That didn't save enough, so it was increased to 735 jobs. The final revised version has upped it to 850 positions , which is just the right number.

10 posted on 02/16/2009 10:14:31 AM PST by libh8er
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To: Steelfish

It says they are weekend agency staff. Doesn’t that mean they really work for someone else?


11 posted on 02/16/2009 10:15:11 AM PST by CindyDawg
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To: Steelfish

Wise to not give the union thugs time to plan sabotage.


12 posted on 02/16/2009 10:15:14 AM PST by Seruzawa (Obamalama lied, the republic died.)
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To: FlingWingFlyer
The chic thing to do these days is to throw your shoes

They don't wear them in Miss.

13 posted on 02/16/2009 10:16:08 AM PST by llevrok (The word "shan't" should be used more.)
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To: libh8er

Forgot to mention, at the very infancy of the cost reduction program, BMW wanted to eliminate only 330 mid and lower level manager.


14 posted on 02/16/2009 10:17:05 AM PST by libh8er
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To: libh8er

manager = managers.


15 posted on 02/16/2009 10:17:35 AM PST by libh8er
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To: Steelfish

Yes an hour’s notice was bogus...BMW had to known somewhat beforehand that they needed to lay off people.

They probably will bring in Third Worlders next week...


16 posted on 02/16/2009 10:17:55 AM PST by UCFRoadWarrior (The Biggest Threat To American Soverignty Is Rampant Economic Anti-Americanism)
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To: llevrok
They don't wear them in Miss.

Woops. I take that back. This is the UK.

Well, they could have thrown their dentures, but.....

17 posted on 02/16/2009 10:18:13 AM PST by llevrok (The word "shan't" should be used more.)
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To: Steelfish

...workers then immediately collected up the apples and oranges as they realized it would not be a good time to waste food.....


18 posted on 02/16/2009 10:19:15 AM PST by Secret Agent Man (I'd like to tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.)
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To: reagan_fanatic
but an hour’s notice is bullsh*t.

It seems more like a week's notice, but it's still a tough pill to swallow.

19 posted on 02/16/2009 10:20:02 AM PST by Petronski (For the next few years, Gethsemane will not be marginal. We will know that garden. -- Cdl. Stafford)
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To: DonaldC

I disagree. I’ve been layed of twice in 40 years. We had heard that layoffs may be coming. The layoffs came on a Friday morning, not notice. Two weeks notice would not have accomplished a thing other than problems in production. If you are going to layoff employees, get it over with and get on with business.


20 posted on 02/16/2009 10:21:32 AM PST by RC2
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To: Fido969
I feel as though I’ve been used.

Not really. You were paid and compensated in other ways for every hour you worked there.

21 posted on 02/16/2009 10:22:51 AM PST by libh8er
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To: RC2; Steelfish; DonaldC; reagan_fanatic; UCFRoadWarrior; Petronski

I think RC2 has it right.

Who would want to buy a car that was built by po’d union labor during their “notice” period (can you say ‘lemon’)?

I know I wouldn’t...


22 posted on 02/16/2009 10:29:40 AM PST by jonno (Having an opinion is not the same as having the answer...)
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To: Steelfish

There might come a day when they wish they still had those apples and oranges.


23 posted on 02/16/2009 10:30:35 AM PST by NonValueAdded (May God save America from its government)
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To: reagan_fanatic
“I’m sure there were valid reasons for cutting these people, but an hour’s notice is bullsh*t.”

Not really one hour, they got a weeks severance pay. Based on how the workers reacted I would say good call on BMW's part. Nothing like having disgruntled union workers working in your plant for a week knowing they are going to be laid off.

24 posted on 02/16/2009 10:30:42 AM PST by martinidon
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To: RC2

I agree. When you’re going to quit, let your manager know 5 minutes before the end of your shift. Get it over with and get on with life. None of this 2 weeks notice crap!


25 posted on 02/16/2009 10:32:26 AM PST by ColoCdn (Neco eos omnes, Deus suos agnoset)
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To: FlingWingFlyer

I would assume apples and oranges will be banned not long from now due to their danger as weapons.


26 posted on 02/16/2009 10:33:47 AM PST by MNlurker
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To: Steelfish
Union sources said workers booed and threw apples and oranges at managers after being told the news.

I wonder if management compared them afterwards.

27 posted on 02/16/2009 10:39:02 AM PST by VRWCmember
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To: martinidon
Nothing like having disgruntled union workers working in your plant for a week knowing they are going to be laid off.

I worked with a woman who was let go, but they allowed her to finish out the day. She finished the day by deleting files from her PC as well as a company server and walked away with all the notes and job descriptions useful to her desk that she could lay her hands on.

Best to make a clean break.

28 posted on 02/16/2009 10:46:18 AM PST by Bearshouse
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To: Bearshouse

Yeah, I suppose those workers may have stuffed their pockets with lugnuts from the line, eh?


29 posted on 02/16/2009 10:48:40 AM PST by ColoCdn (Neco eos omnes, Deus suos agnoset)
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To: Steelfish

Traditionally layoffs are done with no notice. I’ve been let go before, its just the way its done.

Whether or not a weeks severance is sufficient might be a question certainly, and that would depend on the local laws, contracts and traditions in the industry.

I’m sure that after the tantrum by the layoffees , the management is glad they did the firings as they did.


30 posted on 02/16/2009 10:49:50 AM PST by I_Like_Spam
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To: I_Like_Spam

So, I ask, would management be glad to receive notices that employees are going to quit 5 minutes before the employees walk out the door?


31 posted on 02/16/2009 10:54:38 AM PST by ColoCdn (Neco eos omnes, Deus suos agnoset)
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To: Steelfish
850 weekend agency staff

agency staff = temps.

32 posted on 02/16/2009 10:55:29 AM PST by 1066AD
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To: ColoCdn

You can surely do that. It is your decision. I would keep in mind that if you did that to me, don’t use me as a reference when applying for another job. There’s logical reasons for doing what many companies do. Not all good, I’ll agree, but when times are bad they must look at what is for the best of the company and...... will they survive? Most good companies don’t like doing layoffs. They actually care for their people, but when the boots hit the dirt, some tough decisions must be made.


33 posted on 02/16/2009 10:56:12 AM PST by RC2
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To: Steelfish

.....We should have been given one month’s notice ......

During which you would sabotage every car that went down the line.

America has that stupid rule and it results in open sabotage on the line


34 posted on 02/16/2009 10:58:07 AM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . The original point of America was not to be Europe)
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To: I_Like_Spam

Notice is a difficult situation in layoffs. In a perfect world, everyone would get sufficient notice and behave professionally prior to their departure.

In the real world, people are petty, they stop working, they steal and damage company property. One woman who was fired in my office walked over to the server, opened it up and ripped out all the wires, then threw coffee on the motherboard. She spent some time in jail when the cops went to her house to retrieve property she stole and found cocaine on her coffee table.


35 posted on 02/16/2009 11:03:54 AM PST by MediaMole
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To: llevrok
Whilst we may not wear shoes, we do indeed know the difference between Oxford Mississippi ad Oxford England...

A minor but intriguingly important piece in your “humor”;-)

36 posted on 02/16/2009 11:05:44 AM PST by ejonesie22 (Stupidity has an expiration date 1-20-2013 *(Thanks Nana))
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To: MediaMole

Sorry, I thought this was at either the Triumph, MG or Hillamn car factories.


37 posted on 02/16/2009 11:06:24 AM PST by SanFranDan
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To: RC2

I managed a department through what was, at that time, the largest chapter 11 bankruptcy in the computer industry. I laid off dozens and dozens of people, people I cared for. And if they asked me, privately, if they were on one of the endless lists of layoffs, I let them know without ‘telling them’ (corporate was paranoid of the repercussions). I lost a $25 piece of equipment in total in two years.

If you’re a good manager, and if you’re a good company, you’ll find ways to avoid this petty crap. If you’re a crappy manager, you’ll fall back on the old canard of “Well it’s better to make it quick.” No, it’s not better, it’s just easier than trying to do the hard work of being a manager who knows his people, and partners with his workers. This is a bush league move, and BMW deserves to have egg on it’s face.


38 posted on 02/16/2009 11:08:40 AM PST by ColoCdn (Neco eos omnes, Deus suos agnoset)
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To: alice_in_bubbaland
Now in the Mini’s defense it is a very fun and well built car, especially dressed in Dinan performance Mods...

And I say that as a driver of one of the “realest” BMWs of all time, a 750il, among others...

39 posted on 02/16/2009 11:08:41 AM PST by ejonesie22 (Stupidity has an expiration date 1-20-2013 *(Thanks Nana))
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To: ColoCdn

I am also out of the electronics industry. Went through a layoff where I had to cut back some of my people. I lost a $30,000.00 design from one ticked off designer. So the coin flips two ways doesn’t it? Each company is different and operates in a manner they believe is best for them. I will say that this was a complete surprise to me. I had the best design staff on the west coast and we were all friends and they were payed higher than any other designers in the company.


40 posted on 02/16/2009 11:15:48 AM PST by RC2
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To: Bearshouse
“... allowed her to finish the day.”

That's why you tell the person to be terminated to clean out his/her desk while the security guy watches, and then have said security guy walk the ex-employee off the premises. It seems brutal and undignified, but the alternative invites nothing but trouble in too many instances. It's often cheaper to do that and mail them two weeks’ pay.

41 posted on 02/16/2009 11:16:28 AM PST by riverdawg
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To: ejonesie22

We like our 08 550i with the sport package. Handles great and gets good mileage for a 8 cylinder.


42 posted on 02/16/2009 11:23:57 AM PST by alice_in_bubbaland (WELCOME TO THE OBAMANATION!!!!! Markets and Marxists Don't Mix!)
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To: RC2

And you chose not to prosecute the former employee for the illegality of stealing 30 grand? Why?

And yes, I believe that even with the potential for loss, businesses have as much a moral obligation to inform their employees as the employees have, to inform each other
of a parting of the ways. Calls for “loyalty” flip both ways too.

This talk about employees who damage corporate assets has a solution: the law. If the company doesn’t choose to pursue it, that’s their problem.


43 posted on 02/16/2009 11:29:22 AM PST by ColoCdn (Neco eos omnes, Deus suos agnoset)
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To: ColoCdn

The person wasn’t prosecuted. He was given the choice to go to court or give up money he had on the books to cover the cost, which included the re-design of the product. I understand what you are saying but at times, circumstances don’t fit all models and hard choices must be made.


44 posted on 02/16/2009 11:35:33 AM PST by RC2
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To: Steelfish

They work for an agency so they are temps anyway, they could have been let go any time.


45 posted on 02/16/2009 11:36:29 AM PST by visualops (portraits.artlife.us or visit my freeper page)
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To: MNlurker
I would assume apples and oranges will be banned not long from now due to their danger as weapons.

Pointed stick? Oh, oh, oh. We want to learn how to defend ourselves against pointed sticks, do we? Getting all high and mighty, eh? Fresh fruit not good enough for you eh? Well I'll tell you something my lad. When you're walking home tonight and some great homicidal maniac comes after you with a bunch of loganberries, don't come crying to me!

46 posted on 02/16/2009 11:40:50 AM PST by dfwgator (1996 2006 2008 - Good Things Come in Threes)
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To: alice_in_bubbaland

Excellent choice...

I am hoping the 730d diesel makes it here in the next couple of years. I could never stomach the looks of the e65/e66 (2002-2008 7 series) so I stuck with a 2001 750. But this new 7 looks like it could be a keeper..


47 posted on 02/16/2009 11:42:19 AM PST by ejonesie22 (Stupidity has an expiration date 1-20-2013 *(Thanks Nana))
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To: ejonesie22

Hubby still has his 735i. Right now it’s been in the shop for a week. The battery keeps going dead even after having a new battery installed. I’m thinking it’s the alternator.


48 posted on 02/16/2009 11:48:10 AM PST by alice_in_bubbaland (WELCOME TO THE OBAMANATION!!!!! Markets and Marxists Don't Mix!)
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To: UCFRoadWarrior
>>>...BMW had to known somewhat beforehand that they needed to lay off people.<<<

BMW probably knew that the union thugs would get the employees to sabotage the plant if given time on the job after notice of the RIF.

British unions are why BMW sold Land Rover...never could get satisfactory work or acceptance of changes out of them. That's why they went with the Mini and a totally new plant with new employees.

Its been extremely successful....I've owned a Mini S since early 2003 - just threw a few mods at it and now have 215HP and it's an absolute hoot to drive - poor man's Porsche.

49 posted on 02/16/2009 12:00:29 PM PST by HardStarboard ("The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule - Mencken knew Obama)
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To: alice_in_bubbaland

Get a new dealer - or an independent shop. The first thing to check if a battery goes dead, and it’s under 5 years old, is alternator output....takes 3 minutes!


50 posted on 02/16/2009 12:04:20 PM PST by HardStarboard ("The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule - Mencken knew Obama)
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