There is a new truth in business and in leadership. You can’t afford to put numbers ahead of people. We have seen the shift happen with The Great Resignation
But even though we have all the data, it was hard to see it play out; until Better.com.
In December 2021, just before Christmas, Better.com’s CEO, Vishal Garg, fired 900 employees on a Zoom call lasting 3 minutes (including the DEI team). His message to employees was that of an old-school leader who put himself & profits over everything. Even going as far to say:
“This is the second time in my career I’m doing this, and I do not want to do this. The last time I did it I cried. Um, this time, I hope to be stronger.”
This statement shows that he considers himself and his appearance over the lives of his people who he was about to lay off a few weeks before Christmas.
To show his leadership even further, Forbes obtained an email in 2020 sent by Garg to his people with the following quote:
“You are TOO DAMN SLOW. You are a bunch of DUMB DOLPHINS and…DUMB DOLPHINS get caught in nets and eaten by sharks. SO STOP IT. STOP IT. STOP IT RIGHT NOW. YOU ARE EMBARRASSING ME.”
Since those layoffs in December, Garg was forced to take a leave of absence and a leadership review was conducted on the company. But the reputation of Better.com and Garg’s poor leadership has affected the company who laid off 34% of their workforce, without telling them, earlier this week. This quote from The Real Deal sums it up nicely:
“Garg’s handling of those earlier firings, which the board subsequently described as “very regrettable,” triggered an internal review and precipitated the resignations of other executives, including the company’s vice president of communications and its heads of marketing and public relations. It may also have negatively impacted the company’s ability to secure new customers.”
That’s the new reality of 2022. You can’t afford to lead a business with old-school leadership strategies. If you don’t change now, you will suffer the same fate as Better.com.
You can’t survive on better(.com) leadership. You need Elite leadership.
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For more on Leadership 2.0 and stories about 2.0 Leaders who have succeeded during the pandemic, check out this week’s Leadership Launchpad Project with Gary Ryan! We take a deep dive into people-centric leadership & people who disrupted leadership during COVID.!. Check it out on Apple, Spotify, Stitcher, Amazon Music, Google Podcasts and more!
– Coach Rob