I came in to work one day at my last job. Had a meeting request for 10am for a "strategy meeting" with no agenda. I knew that this meant layoffs. So I wrote to a co-worker, saying "This can't be good."
He responded, "Look at your meeting request. I am going to a different meeting than you are." He was in the bad meeting. Basically, they were allowed to get their stuff after the meeting and that was it.
About a third of the rest of us quit within 2 weeks anyway. We didn't like how they had treated those who were laid off.
At the job I had before that one (sorry, no link, company has gone out of business), they canned the co-CEO and a couple of his flunkies on a Wednesday. Changed the locks and everything. Asked me to change all their passwords etc, and they brought in a consultant to lock them out of the network. One of the flunkies was the sysadmin. The consultant ended up totally frying their network cause he was worthless. The guys being canned were pretty much worthless as employees as well, but they weren't criminals and they weren't gonna come in and steal shit. Especially since they turned over their keys.
I knew the company was on shaky ground, and I had gotten in the face of the chairman of the board of directors (yelled at him and told him he was an underhanded fucking bastard) about 3 weeks before this. So I knew that I was on the chopping block. After the co-CEO was canned, I pulled aside one of the company vice-presidents (17 people, 2 CEOs, 3 vice presidents) and told him that I knew it was likely that I would be canned, but that they better not treat me like that if they did so.
Two days later (Dec 3rd, 1999 I believe) I was canned. Funny thing was they had just hired three new guys to work underneath me, and who now were replacing me. They were freaked. I took all of them out that Friday and got them horribly drunk in celebration of my getting canned. I think that was either the first or second time I went to the Vogue
The next week I went out and bought Christmas gifts for EVERYONE at the office. Went back there and walked around the office (as they were moving the office so they could move into a new place, wonder why they bothered changing the locks. . . .). Gave everyone their gifts, including the two people who fired my ass.
So after I left, I had a source who stayed with the company (she was sleeping with my boss, the guy who fired me). She relayed to me that they were all freaked out by the gift thing and got all paranoid about it.