Google employees criticize “very boring” management that lacks a “visionary leader” amid layoffs
Angry Googlers are done being nice.
Current and former employees at the tech giant took to LinkedIn to vent their frustration at how management handled the latest round of layoffs — with one software engineer criticizing senior officials as lacking “one visionary leader.”
“From senior managers to senior vice presidents to vice presidents, they are all very boring and glassy-eyed,” Diane Hirsch Theriault wrote on her LinkedIn page on Wednesday.
Theriault was reacting to the news that Google would lay off several hundred people from its ad sales team.
Last week, the company laid off about 1,000 employees from its Pixel, Fitbit, and Nest divisions, a move that angered employees who were particularly upset by the fact that CEO Sundar Pichai had not reached out directly to those affected.
On Thursday, Pichai told employees that more job cuts were likely this year, though he warned they would not be on the scale of a year ago.
“We have ambitious goals and will invest in our biggest priorities this year,” Pichai told all Google employees on Wednesday in an internal memo first obtained by The Verge.
“The reality is that in order to create the capacity for this investment, we have to make tough choices.”
“Call me old school, but I believe that if you find yourself in a situation where you need to let someone go, you owe it to them to meet them face to face, look them in the eye, and acknowledge their humanity,” Kenneth Smith, the former engineering director let go by Google, wrote on his Twitter account. LinkedIn website.
Smith, who acknowledged that a supervisor followed up with him after news of the layoffs broke, wrote that he “feels a lot of anger and frustration toward Google’s leadership for the way it handled the layoffs” of 12,000 colleagues last year.
“I don’t see much evidence that they learned much from that experience,” he wrote.
Gergely Oros, a software engineer and technology commentator, responded to Smith’s LinkedIn post on X, in which he criticized Google as a “faceless company.”
“Google has built a reputation as the place where only after years of service do you get an email from the system saying you’ve been fired,” Orosz wrote on X.
“It’s just business. They can fire you at any time (and they will, if it’s in the business interest) and you do the same and leave at any time (when it’s in your personal interest), ” Orosz wrote, adding: “Forget ‘loyalty’ or Commitment in both directions.
Last year, Google laid off about 12,000 workers as technology companies sought to cut costs in anticipation of the economic downturn.
At the time of the layoffs, the company boasted a total global workforce of approximately 187,000 people.
A company representative told Business Insider that it is “investing responsibly in our company’s biggest priorities and important opportunities ahead,” adding that the organizational changes included “eliminating some roles globally.”
“We are continuing to support any affected employees as they search for new roles here at Google and beyond,” a Google representative said.
Shares of Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company, rose more than 2% on Friday.