February 23, 2009

News & Opinion: The Downturn Hits 800-CEO-READ

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 7:51 PM – Filed under: The Company

Last Wednesday, a little less than one month into my new job, I had to tell seven people they could no longer work here.

The numbers in the publishing industry have been pointed down for a number of months. The retail side of our business, Harry W. Schwartz Bookshops, announced they were closing last month. And just last week, Borders announced another layoff.

For us, the impact of the current economic conditions has been swift and dramatic. We had to scale our business back to match the environment we are in and will likely be in for the next couple of years (yes, I said years).

I mention it here for a couple reasons. First, we have always been open about our company, how we run our business, and how we view the world. Sharing this news with all of you gives you another data point about the economy as a whole.

Second, some of the writers who have written for our blog are among those who have been let go. Kate and Rebecca are among those in the process of figuring out what is next.

Those of us left are also in the process of figuring out what is next.

About Dylan Schleicher

Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.