In the wild, it's often the aged who are first to go when resources get slim. The young take their place and the herd moves on.
The same goes with job layoffs, with older, better paid workers losing their jobs and the younger, less experienced and cheaper workers moving up. At least that's the conventional wisdom.
But Boeing, CVS and some other smart companies are letting seniority stand for something and are keeping older employees while still planning to cut jobs, according to a BusinessWeek story.
Boeing, for example, doesn't want a "brain drain" such as what happened to it in the late 1990s when voluntary buyouts left it short of experienced workers. Boeing plans to cut 10,000 jobs this year, and will choose who will be laid off and won't have voluntary buyouts.