corporate anorexia
n. A business disorder marked by an extreme fear of becoming inefficient that leads to excessive cost-cutting to the point of serious loss of business and sometimes bankruptcy.
Some business bosses unfortunately have blinders on and feel that drastic cost-cutting alone is the answer when times are tough. They develop corporate anorexia. Those companies have become so skinny they'll be the last to get healthy again.
—Al Neuharth, “What will be top 10 headlines in 2002?,” USA Today, January 04, 2002
1986 (earliest)
Combine the complexity of modern life, natural human insecurity and the current mood of "corporate anorexia - cutting staff out of fear of getting fat," and you create paranoia, says psychologist Dr. Richard Earle, director of the Canadian Institute of Stress in Mississauga.
—Louise Brown, “Office Paranoia,” The Toronto Star, August 30, 1986
My definition is a play on the following definition of anorexia nervosa: "An eating disorder, marked by an extreme fear of becoming overweight that leads to excessive dieting to the point of serious ill-health and sometimes death."