I'm hanging in. To say that life is turned upside down would be understating dramatically. I stepped off my flight in Colorado a few weeks ago just as everything was going to shit. In the airport I was collecting my luggage on Saturday evening when I read the new that Vail was shutting down operations, including its HQ where I was supposed to start on Monday. I was lost. Sunday evening at 10pm I received news that I would not be starting that week as planned, but to sight tight and they would pay me in the interim. Wednesday of the next week they finally onboarded me remotely. The next morning I grabbed a laptop from the office, and that day flew back to New England where I have been working remotely for the last week.
Yesterday I received the email to employees that you have all heard about. I've been in meetings all morning with senior leadership at Vail. I've gone through a rollercoaster of emotions.
At first I was upset and thought that if they led with this reduced salary, I never would haven taken the job. That much is true. But I'm not convinced that the grass would be much greener where I came from. The whole world is in the shit now.
I've been very impressed with the workplace culture at Vail Resorts. You can learn a lot about the fabric of an organization by how it responds to periods of stress. I've seen more honest, heartfelt communication from Vail than any of my previous employers. The employees here are more personal, and seem to deeply care about each other. They are a great group of people that I am happy to work with. At the leadership level, I have seen senior management shed tears today over the difficulty of these decisions and impacts to employees and their families.
When I look at how the cuts are being made, they look well thought out. Seasonal employees were let go with only a few weeks remaining in the season and were paid for at least a week of that. The hourly employees year round employees had been paid until this point, and are at least getting full health care benefits fully paid by the company for the duration of the furlough. The salary reductions are progressive to impact the most senior level the most.
I'm trying to keep a positive outlook. I don't know how will come next. If the summer season is cancelled, it is likely there will need to be further cuts made. But all of us are in it together.