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I doubt IBM lays off its older workers solely to appeal to Millenials.

It's more likely that older workers are laid off because they are more expensive due to higher higher pay, have more paid time off, use more healthcare and are more politically calibrated to their organizations than younger workers.

It feels like something that IBM regularly does, similar to Cisco's revolving lay-off cycles. Microserfs by Douglas Coupland has a part where the protagonist's father is fired from IBM after being there for years.

Well, Microserfs was written in 1994, just after IBM's 1993 cataclysm where Lou Gerstner was hired to save the company and immediately fired 160,000 people. That was very much a one-off event.

A one off event because of scale. but part of a continuation of downsizing. So only one off in one sense not in others.

Cisco's one off downsizing has been threefold.

It's more likely that older workers are laid off because..

This is just a list of rationalizations that you would prefer to believe. That doesn't make them true. If those reasons were actually correct then IBM wouldn't need to fire people. They could solve all of them in other, less (potentially) very expensive ways.

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