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Zachary

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Story: http://www.wesh.com/article/seaworld-eliminating-positions-across-its-theme-parks/8470099

I've heard from a few people now saying that Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Zoology and Marketing departments have been hit. I'm sure with a layoff this large, the effects reach far beyond just those two areas though.
 

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Zachary said:
Story: http://www.wesh.com/article/seaworld-eliminating-positions-across-its-theme-parks/8470099

I've heard from a few people now saying that Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Zoology and Marketing departments have been hit. I'm sure with a layoff this large, the effects reach far beyond just those two areas though.
Saddly I am not supprised. I hope zoo wasn't hot to badly I was actually kind of impressed with the improvements that they made after the last round of cuts brought in new faces. And marketing was doing a bag up job lately in my opinion so hopefully they keep that momentum moving forward
 
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Marketing is not an area they need to be cutting from. It's an area they need to be adding and improving not only at the offices in Orlando but system wide. You can't market to people in VA/PA/TX/CA by sitting in an office in the middle of Florida.
 

Zimmy

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I am guessing zoo will not have any openings anytime soon.

You know for a company that has made preservation of animals one of their core organizational goals, they sure are quick to cut. The more I know about SEAS the less I like them. (my opinion was not high to begin with)
 
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Zimmy said:
I am guessing zoo will not have any openings anytime soon.

You know for a company that has made preservation of animals one of their core organizational goals, they sure are quick to cut.  The more I know about SEAS the less I like them.  (my opinion was not high to begin with)

I am by far no where close to siding with the activists but for a company that's spent 50+ years in conservation, veterinarian services, etc. You are absolutely correct. However this didn't start until BEC sold them out, it was and stayed a core principal of AB to the end.

SEAS would just be better off giving in and doing what they have to do and ridding themselves completely of what has become painfully obvious at this point is a liability to them both internally and externally and drop the "Sea" from their name forever and focus on something else.

Either that or sell the whole park system off because at some point their "core" principals will cease to exist.
 
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Zimmy

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acrossdapark said:
I am by far no where close to siding with the activists but for a company that's spent 50+ years in conservation, veterinarian services, etc. You are absolutely correct. However this didn't start until BEC sold them out, it was and stayed a core principal of AB to the end.

SEAS would just be better off giving in and doing what they have to do and ridding themselves completely of what has become painfully obvious at this point is a liability to them both internally and externally and drop the "Sea" from their name forever and focus on something else.

Either that or sell the whole park system off because at some point their "core" principals will cease to exist.

My understanding is that preservation is also a stated core principal of SEAS.
 

Fur Dozy

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The truth of the matter is that SEAS is pretty vital to conservation efforts in FL. Whether this is a gamble for outside funding, or simple consolidating to the more "important" zoological areas, I can't say. When the money comes in at the end of the day, conservation and marketing are always a red mark on the budget. Only time can show the actual financial effects of these layoffs. Lets hope that the tourism industry bounces back this summer, esp SEAS tourism.
 
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Zimmy said:
acrossdapark said:
I am by far no where close to siding with the activists but for a company that's spent 50+ years in conservation, veterinarian services, etc. You are absolutely correct. However this didn't start until BEC sold them out, it was and stayed a core principal of AB to the end.

SEAS would just be better off giving in and doing what they have to do and ridding themselves completely of what has become painfully obvious at this point is a liability to them both internally and externally and drop the "Sea" from their name forever and focus on something else.

Either that or sell the whole park system off because at some point their "core" principals will cease to exist.

My understanding is that preservation is also a stated core principal of SEAS.

It is. They state it in their reports of giving yearly among other initiatives they have. However as a company if they continue to downsize the departments that work on those core principals then they become less of a core principal and at some point cease to exist.
 

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acrossdapark said:
Zimmy said:
acrossdapark said:
I am by far no where close to siding with the activists but for a company that's spent 50+ years in conservation, veterinarian services, etc. You are absolutely correct. However this didn't start until BEC sold them out, it was and stayed a core principal of AB to the end.

SEAS would just be better off giving in and doing what they have to do and ridding themselves completely of what has become painfully obvious at this point is a liability to them both internally and externally and drop the "Sea" from their name forever and focus on something else.

Either that or sell the whole park system off because at some point their "core" principals will cease to exist.

My understanding is that preservation is also a stated core principal of SEAS.

It is. They state it in their reports of giving yearly among other initiatives they have. However as a company if they continue to downsize the departments that work on those core principals then they become less of a core principal and at some point cease to exist.
It not sure we can say that they are downsizing company wide based on what we know. Its possible that BGW was hit harder on the zoo side then other parks because its a smaller part of the parks business.
 

Zimmy

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acrossdapark said:
It is. They state it in their reports of giving yearly among other initiatives they have. However as a company if they continue to downsize the departments that work on those core principals then they become less of a core principal and at some point cease to exist.

A core principal is a stated goal of a company. No matter how little they spend on it the principal, as long as it remain s stated still exists. Now if they choose to change their principles or their policies and or actions fly in the face of same, that is their business. Principals exist in a binary state, not shades of gray; they either are or are not.

The point remains, as long as they state that preservation is a core principal and they continue to reduce their conservation foot print, they are violating their own policies. Not the first time in business that stated goals become inconvenient and thus ignored in the face of austerity, certainly will not be the last.

Here is a good example, I worked for a company who had a "core value," of "putting employees first in all things." However when their contracts started to dry up, they cut benefits directly, removed high dollar, non-direct employees, and cut salaries across the company. Did this make sense from a business perspective? sure. Was it necessary? I don't know. Was it ethical? probably not. Did it violate stated goals? Certainly.
 
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Zimmy said:
acrossdapark said:
It is. They state it in their reports of giving yearly among other initiatives they have. However as a company if they continue to downsize the departments that work on those core principals then they become less of a core principal and at some point cease to exist.

A core principal is a stated goal of a company.  No matter how little they spend on it the principal, as long as it remain s stated still exists.  Now if they choose to change their principles or their policies and or actions fly in the face of same, that is their business.  Principals exist in a binary state, not shades of gray; they either are or are not.

The point remains, as long as they state that preservation is a core principal and they continue to reduce their conservation foot print, they are violating their own policies.  Not the first time in business that  stated goals become inconvenient and thus ignored in the face of austerity, certainly will not be the last.

Here is a good example, I worked for a company who had a "core value," of "putting employees first in all things."  However when their contracts started to dry up, they cut benefits directly, removed high dollar, non-direct employees, and cut salaries across the company.  Did this make sense from a business perspective? sure.  Was it necessary?  I don't know. Was it ethical? probably not.  Did it violate stated goals?  Certainly.

I get that. But you totally missed the point here. If SEAS is going to operate theme parks and attractions based upon conservation/zoological principals but that's the first place that seems to get the layoffs, downsizing, marketing dollar cuts.

Then as stated SEAS needs to make changes to their stated principals of more then 50 years along with stating that they no longer feel they fall in line with the current company climate and move on. Not kick the can down the road and continue pretending it's something they value yet it's the first thing they cut from to save money. While building $50M coasters and talks of spending another $150M+ over the next year in new attractions.

This isn't the first time they have done this. 2014 comes to mind. Look in the SD newspapers with reports of 60 staff there nearly 1/3 of those just in the zoological department alone according to the WARN notice filed yesterday in CA.
 

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Luke said:
Nicole said:
I'm really worried about Zoo...

Over 15 people gone...mostly animal ambassadors and zoo personnel....at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.

Any body have an estimate or educated guess how many people were employed in all animal care and ambassador positions before the layoff?

Just curious as how much an impact 15 people will have on the department as a whole based on previous staff numbers.

Thanks in advance for any and all input.
 

Luke

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VACoasterFan said:
Luke said:
Nicole said:
I'm really worried about Zoo...

Over 15 people gone...mostly animal ambassadors and zoo personnel....at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.

Any body have an estimate or educated guess how many people were employed in all animal care and ambassador positions before the layoff?

Just curious as how much an impact 15 people will have on the department as a whole based on previous staff numbers.

Thanks in advance for any and all input.
17 people...so all of them. The animal ambassadors at BGW are no more.
 
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Rumors from inside, the actual number of company wide layoffs might be more than they announced. Possibly double more. Anyway to track this because that seems like a lot of bodies? I know we, the patrons, will suffer in quality and service from this move. But, I feel worse for the workers left behind picking up the pieces and having other people's jobs pile upon them.
 
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Two quick other notes on this BGW isn't always required to file a WARN notice in VA because most of their employees work under contract and/or seasonal employment and the employees know their start/hire date.

Also unless the park is laying off 50 or more and meets 33% of the full-time workforce then they would have to file one with a list of who is being laid off.

Second point for those who might not know, the State of VA closed the Virginia Employment Commission office in Wmbg about a year ago and no longer have a rapid deployment team for to handle layoffs. Closest are in Hampton or Hopewell. The VEC office in Wmbg would always take care of the tourism industry over the years.
 
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I am not sure of the current staffing program for the zoo department but back a few years most all were seasonal. The animals were basically rent an animal from a small zoo in the western part of the state. The Clydesdale's were often taken away to Merrimack NH in the off season too. The only thing remaining were some birds and a few monkeys.
 
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I wonder how Tampa plans to be "More aggressive with Howl-O-Scream" as Joel Manby said they would be. Entertainment has very few people left in Tampa. After the first layoffs, most remaining people in Entertainment left. Now (to my knowledge) they don't have an official creative director. They are probably reusing old plans.

For BGW, both the Zoological and Marketing department news is very sad. I thought that things were finally looking up for them but maybe they were just trying everything to stop the inevitable.

I remember in the 2014 layoffs, a showing of Miracles was canceled without a reason given. The entire cast was in tears, so I knew something was going on. Meanwhile I saw Facebook posts from friends in Tampa (employees) that were attending a Christmas/ team member appreciation meeting right before the news was broken. Whether or not the layoffs were necessary, the way of handling them was just heartless.
 
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