Star Employees Aren't Safe From Layoffs

Ford Motor Co. cuts the designer of its new Flex vehicle.

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Last night, I was cleaning house while listening to a rerun of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and looked over long enough to catch sight of a preproduction Ford Flex given to the family.

For all the hype, however, the car's designer reportedly couldn't escape a round of layoffs at the struggling U.S. carmaker.

From the Detroit Free Press:

A week ago, Richard Gresens, the chief designer of the 2009 Ford Flex, was showing off the aerodynamics of Ford Motor Co.'s boxy new 7-seat crossover in a wind tunnel in Allen Park.

But now, Gresens finds himself a casualty of the company's effort to cut salaried-related costs by 15% by Aug. 1, several people with knowledge of his involuntary dismissal told the Free Press. Gresens could not be reached, and Ford officials declined to comment on the layoff.

It's a good reminder for all of us that when companies need to cut costs, none of us are immune.