Big tech companies Alphabet (Google) and Meta Platform (Facebook) warn workers to juice up their productivity or face layoffs.
Alphabet and Meta CEOs are cracking down on slackers. Both companies have warned underperforming employees to step it up, drawing concern for layoffs during the continued economic down spiral, several news outlets have reported.
Fears loom of an economic recession after the U.S. economy shrank from April through June for a second straight quarter. Both Google and Facebook faced disappointing fiscal quarters, and told staffers they have productivity concerns and will be managing staffing performance more closely.
“Any time there is a recession or warning of a recession, companies start looking inward and saying, How can we get ahead of this?” Bauke Group career strategist Julie Bauke told Fox Business.
For Facebook, this is its first ever revenue decline in history. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg told staffers last week that his hope is to raise expectations and have more aggressive goals, according to audio obtained by Reuters.
“Just kind of turning up the heat a little bit,” Zuckerberg was quoted as saying, “I think some of you might decide that this place isn’t for you, and that self-selection is OK with me.”
Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai provided similar concerns. He reportedly told staffers that there are “real concerns that our productivity as a whole is not where it needs to be for the head count we have.”
During the past quarter, Google’s revenue growth had its slowest pace in two years, as advertisers slowed spending amid the growing fears of an economic recession. Second quarter revenue rose 13% this year compared to 62% in last year’s comparable quarter.
“If there are a large number of these warnings of underperformance, it probably will be followed by a reduction in staff unless there is some unexpected revitalization of the economy,” economist John Lonski said, adding that if employees are warned of underperformance, they should brace for a possible layoff.