I read with alarm that thousands of employees at RBS, HSBC and Johnson & Johnson are to be axed in rounds of “corporate bloodletting”. Even celebrity disc jockeys are not safe from such acts of violence – according to today’s Daily Mail, the “loudmouth DJ” Chris Moyles is also “facing the axe”.
In real life, nobody refers to “axing” (or indeed, “slashing”) employees. Cutting jobs, possibly. Redundancies, firings, sackings – certainly. Even, in management-speak, rationalisation or reducing headcount. But fortunately the axe-wielding chief executive is a figure seldom seen outside the gore-spattered pages of our national press.
Reducing the headcount