This is a situation one needs to learn how to handle, for every day, and every month, we find colleagues losing their jobs and sometimes we are forced to be part of the process that decides who will go jobless tomorrow. Silent accusations from other team members are inevitable and it is enormously difficult to remain positive and keep a team motivated, if the leader is viewed as a traitor. But, there are a few things you can do about the situation and this article deals with them.
Refrain From Any Blame Attribution
Attribution of blame is almost reflexive in nature unless one is conscious about the phenomenon. Especially when one feels threatened or at the receiving end of accusations, he or she seeks ways to attribute blame on others or entities external to one's own self. This is a widely prevalent phenomenon and is termed as ''external attribution of blame'' in social psychology. Blaming other people or things for any failure only serves to point out the weakness of your character and lowers the opinion people have of you. This is one of the most common and worst reactions you can make when you feel the weight of having failed your team on your shoulders. So, be conscious about this and refrain from blame attribution. It would worsen the morale, and would do nothing to help you retrieve the situation.
Refrain from Reference Unless There Is Chance to Rectify a Failure
It is always safer to avoid reference to a failure unless there are chances to retrieve the situation and references are made only to that effect. Mentioning an issue, which the team is sore about, is unwise, unless there are positive steps to be taken by the team. Forget and forgive is the motto here, and the safest route out.
Playing downcast and apologetic over the sacking of a colleague, when everyone knows you were in the decision making process is not going to earn you any laurels. Play cool and treat failures as a part of the life on job, and something which is as much normal as every day achievements. Get the team working on routine work and focus only on work, the reason why you are sharing the workplace with your team members. Separate personal life and personal emotions from the workspace.
It is good to help out any team member who has lost his or her job in every manner possible. It is also helpful to talk out things with other team members outside office and chalk out strategies to help those who have lost jobs. Be careful to explicitly set boundaries between life outside the office and in it. The office is not a place to discuss how to help somebody who has lost his or her job from the same office. Such discussions within the workspace considerably lower morale and hamper productivity, which in turn endangers the survival of others including your own self.