My company had a downsizing a few days ago and I am laid off as well. now my manager has asked me to hold a “workshop” for our other designers to show and teach them how i work. (Its not handover, it’s completely for educational purposes)

1. Does this sound as ridiculous as i think it is? Should i say no or just do it for the sake of professionalism?

2. If you think i shouldn’t do it, how do you think i should stand up to his request? I really struggle with confidence in workplace as a woman.

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This is incredibly thoughtless and unprofessional of your manager. Tell them you are not in the right frame of mind to prepare or lead a workshop this as you serve your final notice period. That this downsizing has come as a complete surprise so you must use all your spare time and energy to focus on planning your next move.

Lastly, say that if they value your expertise, you will be available to do the workshop at a premium freelance rate after your last day with the company.

likesmarthelpful

Something very similar happened to me. The short answer is No. Do not help someone who’s obviously unaware of their actions. Let them pay for their decisions. And just make sure if you do decide to go against this advice and host this workshop- workshops cost thousands of dollars. You’re in a position of power. They shouldn’t be making a profit off your knowledge after they “strategically” let you go.

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Agree and then make the designers watch YouTube videos the whole time while you do a job search.

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So the organization didnt value you enough to retain you, but they value how you work and what your process is enough that they want you to conduct a workshop (for free?) for the remaining team? I would gracefully decline, unless they are willing to pay a premium for your time. But they have shown you they are pretty crass and amoral people IMO, you owe them zero favors. Good luck, leaving this place could turn out to be a big benefit to you.

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Tell them you don’t have the mental capacity to conduct a workshop. And you’ll follow up after your last day.

If you’re good enough to train, they can have you on as an employee. Good luck!

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The audacity of laying off someone and then expecting them to train the staff about how they do their job. If I’m being laid off that means you don’t need me — figure it out yourself.

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Wow. Here’s how I would handle this. I would go to the manager and in private I would say “I feel that it is rather insensitive and bold of you to lay me off and then ask me to do this workshop. I am trying very hard not to let my true feelings show on this matter. If my expertise is that valuable to you then perhaps you should wait until the end of my severance and pay me as a freelancer to deliver this workshop. I would be happy to put together a quote for you.”

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Be open to working for them and charge triple/quadruple your current rate. No burned bridges. Let the past employer make the decision on them bringing you on.

If they can’t afford you, it’s their problem for planning poorly. You’re worth the time and money. Continue to look for your next landing place and you command your schedule not the other way around.

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This is really terrible of them to ask. They laid you off and then asked you to provide services that they could have kept you on to complete? Nah.

Say thanks but no thanks. They had their chance to retain you as an employee. Their priority is clearly to the bottom line and not to their employees.

Reading this honestly disheartens me so much because, although I haven't been downsized, I have felt the immense pressure to do things just because I am female in a male dominated office space.

I hope you can see that you are better than this treatment and deserve more from an employer than to be tossed around like a sack of potatoes.

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Here is how I would do it. I would not burn my bridge to the company by saying no, if i was in a condition where i could do the workshop. As you as employee is free to leave so is the company free to let you go - some times its a gift in ugly wrapping paper. I don’t belive that your unique set of skills can be transfered in one single workshop, and its up to you to decide what gold you give away. You should let your manager know this, but keeping a positive attitude. By doing this workshop you are keeping the door open, for all who could be recomending you in the future. When your last day comes you’ll know that you did what you could and thats a better feeling anyway - you could also ask you manager to write you a personale recomendation for a future job, its a good thing to get something in return :)

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I’m of the opinion that you say anything of your true feelings you will burn that bridge. Just charge a premium and let them make the decision. Don’t do “sour grapes”. The industry is too small to do that. It’s a win for you if you get paid a lot. it’s a win when you don’t work for them if they can’t afford you and you didn’t want to work for them.

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No. They have more upside than the person they just laid off. Even an expensive one time workshop doesn’t replace a full-time job. And if the industry is too small - that goes both ways.

If it’s within the notice period then you have an obligation to provide, especially if it is a handover activity.

If it’s outside you have no obligation. But you probably should as freelance/contract work at 2.2x - 3.5x you hourly wage.

Don’t burn bridges, finish strong, finish honourably. Human only remember the peaks and conclusions so conclude well.

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No way.

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Tell them they’ll need to to pay your (considerably higher) consultancy rate to do it

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Something I haven’t read yet, but I’d also reference your job description. I am sure the job description doesn’t have anything in it about training other team members. So if they want you to become a consultant (which is really what they are asking)… it should be outside your remaining days and it should be at a good freelance rate.
And please have more confidence in your work. This does layoff does not define you. Them asking you to train other designers is proof that you are better than you give yourself credit for. Hold your head up high. Also, I suggest you connect with Stephen Gates, he helps people look at layoffs differently. Also, join Adplist.org it will help with networking and could help you land on your feet faster.
Also, if you do happen to go forward with the workshop, use the experience & write it as a line item on your resume. “Experience holding workshops to train X number of designers in proper UX process.”
Best of luck, and DM me if you want to connect! I’d be happy to join your network.

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Agree. My first impression was that the OP was still working, but had just received the layoff notice. I expect the employer to try and wrap this request up in "other duties as assigned" language.

I really like the suggestion by someone else to say, "I'm not in an appropriate headspace to provide the necessary training." Or I'd even respond that I don't have the required time to develop adequate training with all of the hand off tasks that are necessary to make sure stakeholders aren't negatively impacted by my layoff.

I’m confused, are they asking you to do this after you’ve already had your final day? Or during your remaining time there? I’d tell them that they can pay you your consulting rate if they want that expertise.

You are already laid off! Effective immediately? How do you still have access to your work email?

If he sent the request to you via persons channels, then treat it as a freelance job and send him an estimate.

Agree with the sentiments here. As a fellow female design lead, I would of offered to train replacements if I had a long exit window and left of my own volition but in this case if you were laid off you owe them no such kindness.

Did you get laid off effective immediately? I would use my remaining PTO and avoid that ridiculous ask.

That is an absolutely insane ask! You don’t work there anymore. That person is no longer your manager. They have no right to ask you to do anything. Save your dignity and tell them no.

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