CHICAGO — When employers announce they are discharging workers, they are more likely to use ``indirect language'' than in previous years. According to an outplacement consulting firm, Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., companies often avoid such terms as layoffs, terminations, firing, axing, reducing staff, and clearing out dead wood. Instead, they use such phrases as: ``Cutting away layers of management,'' ``Bracing for an era of modest growth,'' ``Doubling up on jobs,'' ``Downsizing,'' ``Eliminating redundancy,'' ``Idling facilities,'' ``Increasing operational efficiencies,'' ``Eliminating excess capacity,'' ``Consolidating management functions,'' and so on.
The new language, says James E. Challenger, president of the firm, is ``out of concern for the workers being discharged. The corporation of the '90s has more concern for the individual than the company of the '60s.''