A recording by CEO Vishal Garg announcing the layoff of around 15% of Better.com employees in the US and India went viral last week as viewers shared their shock at his brutal speech.
“If you’re on that call, you’re part of the unlucky group that’s being laid off. Your employment here is terminated with immediate effect, ”Garg says in the video.
He later defended the decision in an article on Blind, an anonymous review site, according to Fortune.
“You guys know at least 250 of those fired were working an average of 2 hours a day while clocking 8+ hours a day into the payroll system? They were robbing you and robbing our customers who pay the bills that pay our bills. Educate yourself, ”Garg wrote under the username“ uneducated ”.
Mr. Garg confirmed to Fortune that he’s the person who wrote the post, saying, “I think they could have been worded differently, but honestly the feeling is there. “
The outlet reported that Better.com determined who would be fired by looking at individual employee data, such as attendance at customer meetings and the number of calls made, answered and missed.
Members of the company’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion recruiting team were among those fired, CNN Business reported.
Mr. Garg began the announcement by saying that the market had changed and the business had to evolve with it in order to survive.
“This isn’t news you’re going to want to hear. But ultimately it was my decision and I wanted you to hear it from me. It was a really, really difficult decision to make. This is the second time in my career that I’ve done this and I don’t want to do this. The last time I did this I cried. This time, I hope to be stronger, ”he said.
“We are laying off about 15% of the company,” he added.
He cited market efficiency, productivity and performance as the reason for the massive layoffs.
The chief executive said all laid-off employees based in the United States would receive four weeks of severance pay, one month of full benefits and two months of coverage for which the company would pay premium.
Snippets of the video call spread like wildfire on social media, with one appearing to show a fired employee expressing shock at the news.
“It’s not real. Oh my god I can’t believe it. It is not real. Oh no, that can’t happen, ”the person can be heard saying on the clip.
“Having to go through layoffs is heartbreaking, especially at this time of year,” Kevin Ryan, the company’s chief financial officer, said in a statement to CNN.
“However, a stronghold balance sheet and a small, concentrated workforce have put us together to go on the offensive in a rapidly changing home ownership market,” added Mr. Ryan.
Better.com, founded in 2016, recently received $ 750 million (£ 566 million) in investment and is expected to go public. The company is preparing to have around $ 1 billion (£ 754 million) on its balance sheet, CNN reported.
While layoffs are a grim reality for countless companies, Mr. Garg also has a habit of insulting his employees and has been the subject of numerous allegations of fraud and financial embezzlement at his previous businesses.
In an email obtained by Forbes magazine in 2020, he wrote to staff, “You are TOO DAMN SLOW. You’re a bunch of DUMB DOLPHINS… SO STOP IT. STOP THAT. STOP IT NOW. YOU EMBLEM (sic) ”.