Microsoft has come beneath fireplace after particulars of a get collectively it held in Davos, Switzerland, left the corporate’s employees greater than a little bit stung.
The Wall Road Journal reported this week that Microsoft hosted an unique occasion for round 50 individuals on the Swiss ski resort on Tuesday night, with sources telling the publication that attendees had been handled to a reside efficiency from iconic musician Sting. The occasion’s theme was sustainability, in keeping with the WSJ.
It’s unclear whether or not Microsoft paid Sting to carry out at its occasion on Tuesday night, however in keeping with reserving company AAE Music it will possibly price upward of $500,000 to rent the artist for a non-public gig.
Invitees to the occasion—which the WSJ described on Wednesday as “intimate”—reportedly included a few of the firm’s most senior executives.
The subsequent day, Microsoft introduced it was slashing 10,000 jobs—nearly 5% of its workforce—citing “macroeconomic situations and altering buyer priorities.”
It marked the biggest spherical of layoffs on the firm since 2014. Towards the tip of final 12 months, the corporate introduced it will be letting 1,000 workers go.
In an electronic mail to staff on Wednesday, CEO Satya Nadella stated some employees could be informed that day that their jobs could be reduce, including that the downsizing could be accomplished by the third quarter of 2023.
“We are going to deal with our individuals with dignity and respect, and act transparently,” he stated. “These selections are troublesome, however essential.”
“We’re residing by occasions of great change,” Nadella additionally informed his workforce. “We’re seeing organizations in each business and geography train warning as some elements of the world are in a recession and different elements are anticipating one.”
Microsoft is simply the newest behemoth of the tech sector to announce sweeping job cuts. Amazon, Twitter and Salesforce are amongst a plethora of tech companies who additionally introduced layoffs in current months.
Some Microsoft staff informed the WSJ that the flip of occasions between Tuesday and Wednesday was not a very good search for the tech large.
As particulars emerged across the firm’s gathering in Davos—the place rich and highly effective individuals from all around the world are gathering for the World Financial Discussion board’s annual flagship convention—the agency additionally confronted criticism on social media, with some dubbing the firm’s moves “hypocrisy” and a “bad look.”
Rita Gunther McGrath, a professor at Columbia Enterprise College and writer of The Finish of Aggressive Benefit, said in a tweet that Microsoft’s week had left the agency’s status considerably tarnished.
“I’m an enormous fan of Satya Nadella, however that is critically unhealthy govt symbolism,” she stated.
Angus Norton, CEO of Seattle-based Bodhi Enterprise Labs and a former VP at Microsoft, stated of the tech titan’s PR blunder that “the optics aren’t good.”
“I feel it’s simple to overlook that the time period ‘job cuts’ = ‘livelihoods impacted’,” he stated in a LinkedIn publish on Thursday. “Behind each ‘reduce’ is a human being, a household, a mouth to feed.”
Representatives for Microsoft weren’t out there for remark when contacted by Fortune.
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