I work for a company that has a big headquarters and 14 or 15 smaller local branches in different cities across the country. I work in one of the newest and smallest branch, opened in 2016 with a total of 55 people.

Until last November (2019) there were:

  1. A branch general director

  2. 3 top managers, and

  3. 7 other managers (5 with permanent contracts and 2 with temporary ones).

During annual review at the end of November 2019, a lot of quarrels and contrasts have arisen between those managers, and the company headquarters around following reasons:

  1. Missed promises.

  2. No salary increases/bonuses.

  3. Different vision for branch management, etc.

As a result, before the end of the year, the general director was let go, and the 3 top managers and 2 other managers resigned. During last and this week, 3 managers resigned as well. The last manager is one of the temporary ones and her contract will end on 15 January 2020.

Because only managers had contacts with clients (for example I never mailed/phoned directly a client, I took part in only a very few calls and I don’t have any way to contact them. All communications were held by managers, both from us to clients and from clients to us) 2 projects have already stopped. Teams have no activities planned and no way to ask for others. My team has planned activities until the last week of January 2020, but no way to communicate with client too.

Until now there's not a single communication (phone call, email, snail mail) from headquarters. Who should I contact? HR? Administration? CEO? I have never had contact with anyone at headquarters. (and what should I write to them? "Do you remember of us?", "I don't know you and you don't know me but: what should we do here?", not great ideas I think).

Is it time to polish my CV? Or can I take some advantage from this situation (I don’t want to become a manager thought, at least not yet)?

  • Did those managers use company emails or company phones? If so, your next task (aside from polishing your own resume) should be to take over those email addresses and phone numbers, reset the passwords, read the emails, check those voice mails, check the phone logs, reconstruct those lost connections, call former clients, introduce yourself as a replacement, prospect for new clients, etc. This is true whether you take over, or someone else does. And for that, you'll probably need help from HQ's IT department or accounts payables. Commented Jan 11, 2020 at 20:09
  • Company emails for sure, phone I don't know (probably true for general director and top managers, false for the other managers). Their PCs were already sent to HQ. I don't know if they are doing something on those PC or not (and again i don't know who to ask for: even communications/requests to HQ's IT were hold by managers)
    – Left alone
    Commented Jan 13, 2020 at 7:30

4 Answers 4


Start looking for other suitable work opportunities

During annual review at the end of November 2019, a lot of quarrels and contrasts have arisen between those managers, and the company headquarters

This implies that the company headquarters is aware of the issues. If the headquarter/responsible team has not taken steps to revive the situation for a reasonable time, it may not be worth putting a lot of hope into them going forward.

Consider polishing your resume and start looking for other opportunities sooner than later.

A rational approach would be to focus on doing what's best for your career progression instead of looking for reviving the given situation (as it appears you are neither a part of, nor wish to move into a management position with the current company).

Good luck for your future.

  • If the headquarter/responsible team has not taken steps to revive the situation for a reasonable time to be fair to the company, having 90% of your management walk out the door within a few weeks of each other is a bit difficult to recover from. At that point, your plans A, B, C, D, and so on are all thrown out the door. It leaves me feeling like it's hard to judge if the headquarters is responding "quickly" or not.
    – dwizum
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 14:57
  • 1
    @dwizum I think that even if they don't have any solution, a simple email "We are working on it, don't worry, we know about your existence" would be appreciated. I am much more worried about the total absence of communications than everything else
    – Left alone
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 15:05
  • 4
    @Leftalone Right now you're at serious risk of the company closing down the entire branch to cut cost. They may try to revive the branch with new/ temporary management, but it's not a good sign they haven't sent any communications out.
    – jcmack
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 15:20
  • 1
    @Leftalone I agree, an email would probably be wonderful - to be clear, I wasn't trying to disagree with this answer or suggest that there isn't a crisis, I was just trying to point out that this is a crisis for the headquarters as well and it's hard to know what is or isn't happening behind the scenes. That ambiguity may alone be enough to help some people decide to leave!
    – dwizum
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 15:27

You should probably discuss between your remaining colleagues if you think your branch will recover or will close down.

If you agree that the branch closes down, you look for new jobs, and consider not contacting HQ at all. Just see how long they pay your salary. Nobody might figure out that you are paid salaries for no work for a while.

(I just read you were 55 in total, so 44 non-managers left. With that many people HQ should notice. And do something. )


Ask HR.

Hello HR,
branch XYZ here.
As you know there are no managers left here; who is my new supervisor?

Adjust the wording to better suit your needs but this would be the first thing I would do in the same situation.

  • Last Friday we were discussing between us something similar. Today we will probably send a generic email to HR mailing list, CCing everyone here.
    – Left alone
    Commented Jan 13, 2020 at 7:36

If your goal is doing a meaningful job for a company that also cares for you, you should probably look for a new job. But. It looks like you are still getting paid although there is currently no management and no tasks to be done. So you could also take your time and enjoy being paid for doing nothing for while. Of course this will not last forever so you should think about how the company could resolve their current issues and where you want to end up. But for now you also have the option to just do nothing, get paid and wait for things to come to you.

  • There was the story of one guy years ago who was transferred from the USA to the London branch who didn’t want him, and he managed to turn it into a one year paid holiday. It has happened that a company completely forgot about an employee and just kept paying them.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 14:40
  • @gnasher729 You usually still have to sit in the office in these kind of situations so it is not quite a holiday but it is less stressful than actually doing work.
    – quarague
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 14:48
  • Well be payed for sit in the office doing nothing is not very professional, but in my situation is completely out of my power to change this. I can wait for some time as you suggested, not for an year I presume
    – Left alone
    Commented Jan 9, 2020 at 15:01

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