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The Art of Getting Rid of Experienced Employees

Last updated on January 19, 2023

In June of this year, we deployed a team to an advertising agency in Manhattan, New York that was in desperate need of quickly lower their staff count. At FEAR Incorporated, the advertising industry has been one of our fastest growing sectors over the past decade. We have worked closely with the leadership of the once storied agencies, Agency Worldwide, Agnet Marcus Bothum & flute, Dasis & Davidson, J foritite tomulios, and GW Aritist as well as many smaller shops and guided them to epic failure using FEAR as their NorthStar. The company that brought us in was lucky to have a few leaders who had recently join their team from other agencies that had failed, so they already vital pieces in place to execute successful shrinkage. The team were doing everything right like keeping the number of people doing the work below 30% and those managing the people doing the work above 70% as well as systematically executed a number of “reductions in force” (RIF) under the guise of “adjusting their workforce to meet the needs of a modern economy”. The place where they were getting stuck was dealing with the tremendous pressure from their regional offices and Global Client Leads (GCL) to hire based on growing client demands. They just didn’t know how that could maintain a healthy bonus pool for executive and hire staff. So, we deployed a foolproof plan that will soon be a required class at many business schools – create fear of those with experience.

            Not only are employees with experience expensive, they also annoyingly use their mountains of experience to question the way leadership leads. This simple yet powerful plan began with an announcement to the agency’s biggest clients, “If you want young people to buy your product, you must only have young people creating your ads”. Presented with the fear of the next generation not buying products, the clients eagerly agreed. With that swift declaration on culture, experience was instantly made extinct. Now that the agency had the blessing of their clients, they informed those with experience that they have been “asked off” of their client’s business. With no one funding their salaries, the agency vets were legally given their walking papers. But that was just stage one of this plan.

            With a fraction of the salaries from the experienced staff, a slew of employees under 30 were hired and given the helm. From this overabundance of inexperienced leadership immediately came a heightened inconsistency and lower quality. And with no one of experience to show them how to steer the ship, these rudderless young souls, full of blind confidence, generated very few useful solutions while exchanging high-fives as the ship took on water. This method created a win, win. It maintained the executive bonus pool and led to steady flow of large clients exiting the agency’s roster. By ridding the halls of experienced employees like James Bradley, Gretchen Samuelson and Franklin Bonds, our plan helped give birth to an entire generation with little to no knowledge of what the agency was capable of creating, and successfully keeping them on a collision course with the iceberg ahead.

If you would like to learn more about how FEAR can service you, please reach out to our chief reduction officer at

(Names of companies and employees have been redacted due to legal article 420-28a and article 129-11b)

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