- Google employees are fighting back against the company that has long treated them like “family.”
- After cutting 12,000 jobs last year, the search giant plans further cuts in 2024.
- Officials took aim at the “bespectacled leaders” and organized protests in response.
In 2012, Larry Page emphasized how important it was for Google to act like a “family.”
At the time, the search giant was known for its perks like snacks and massages. For Page, who was Google's CEO at the time, treating people translates into “increasing productivity.”
More than a decade later, it's no wonder Googlers wonder where that family's spirit has gone.
Last January, the tech giant announced it would lay off about 12,000 employees, or 6% of its workforce, to cut costs and focus on priority areas such as artificial intelligence.
But the layoffs didn't stop. Chief Executive Sundar Pichai warned employees this week that more would happen in 2024, but said “role reductions” would not be on the same scale as last year. Departments ranging from sales and advertising to products and YouTube will be affected.
It's worth pointing out that Google isn't the only company making such significant cuts. Many big tech companies, including Amazon and Meta, cut thousands of roles to curb ballooning wage bills early in the pandemic.
Of course, this does little to assuage the anger of the Googlers who were forced out of their family homes, or the anxiety and frustration of those who remained.
Backlash against Google Reader
In response to this week's wave of price cuts, Diane Hirsch Theriault, a software engineer at Google, vented on LinkedIn. About Google's leadership.
In a lengthy attack, she called on “bored and misty-eyed” leaders to “disrupt organizational knowledge” and fire “fully functioning teams.”
“Google was a truly magical place, until recently, and somehow executives cashed in on human capital just when it seemed they really needed it,” she wrote. . “In this environment of fear, who can be creative in ushering in a new era for humanity?”
Meanwhile, on Thursday, the Alphabet union planned protests at five of Google's campuses across the U.S., from Mountain View to New York, to “push back against the false talking points Google employs” to streamline decision-making.
“The truth is that these layoffs are causing chaos in our workplaces, leading to increased workloads and widespread uncertainty about which teams will disappear overnight next,” said a senior software engineer. and Alphabet Union Communications Chair Stephen McMurtry said in a statement. .
“Our colleagues are understandably furious and more frustrated than ever to see Google prioritize 'efficiency' over the people responsible for the company's continued and incredible success.” We are recruiting.”
Google said in a statement that it is “responsibly investing in our biggest priorities and important opportunities ahead,” and that the organizational changes will include “the elimination of some roles globally.” added.
Google said it “continues to support affected employees as they explore new roles within and outside of Google.”
Kenneth Smith, Engineering Manager Google He said he was informed by email that he would be removed from his role on January 10, and lamented the manner in which he received the news.
“I think if you're in a situation where you have to let someone go, even if you say you're old-school, you have an obligation to meet that person, look them in the eye, and acknowledge their humanity.'' .” he wrote on LinkedIn.
Although he acknowledged that one of his board members followed up on the news, he expressed “a great deal of anger and frustration with Google's leadership” over how they handled the layoffs starting in January 2023. “I'm hugging him.”
At X, software engineer and technology critic Gergely Orosz acknowledged the callousness with which Smith was fired by Google after about six years at the company, but said, “This is what you would expect from a faceless company.'' ” he pointed out.
“It's just a business. They can fire you at any time (and they would if it was in their business interest) and you can do the same and fire them at any time (if it was in their personal interest or not). b) You can quit.” written by orosh. “In any case, forget about 'loyalty' and 'commitment.'”
This is probably hard for Google employees to accept as they suffer from layoffs.they spent years Luxury benefits and high pay At a company known for its culture of creativity and community.
They may soon have to accept that work is no longer family.