Mark Zuckerberg Issues Serious Economic Warning to Meta Employees

Mark Zuckerberg has sent a chilling message to employees of Meta Platforms Inc.: The company is facing one of the “worst recessions we have seen in recent history” that will necessitate a reduction in staff and resources.

The dire economic warning was issued Thursday during an internal video conference meeting for Meta’s META,
-0.76%
77,800 workers, according to a New York Times report. To underline the ominous message, Zuckerberg told employees to do more with fewer resources and their performance would be assessed more intensively.

“I think some of you may decide that this place isn’t for you, and that self-selection is okay with me,” Zuckerberg said during a phone call, according to the Times. “Realistically, there are probably a lot of people at the company who shouldn’t be here.”

Chris Cox, Meta’s chief product officer, supported Zuckerberg’s comments, saying in a separate memo that Meta is facing “serious times” and that economic “headwinds are fierce.”

The most obvious manifestation will be fewer hires — Facebook’s parent company now plans to add 6,000 to 7,000 engineers this year, against an initial target of 10,000, the Times reported. A former Facebook employee confirmed to MarketWatch that the Silicon Valley company has significantly reduced its hiring plans in recent months.

Meta’s advertising activities have been severely battered by a change in the privacy settings of Apple Inc.’s AAPL,
+1.62%
mobile operating system, limiting the amount of user data that can be collected by Facebook and Instagram. As a result, Meta has posted two consecutive quarterly profit declines for the first time in ten years. Meta lost about $230 billion in market value — its worst one-day hit ever — after posting disjointed results in February.

At the same time, Meta aims to be a risky strategic pivot to the immersive world of the metaverse, which prompted the company’s name change last year.

Meta is one of many tech companies facing tumultuous economic waters as it navigates inflation, a war in Ukraine and supply chain problems. In recent days, Tesla Inc. TSLA,
+1.24%
Netflix Inc. NFLX,
+2.91%
Unity Software Inc. YOU,
+1.96%
Coinbase Global Inc. COIN,
+4.30%
Stitch Fix Inc. fix,
-0.81%
Redfin Corp. RDFN,
+8.74%
have announced major job losses.

Meanwhile, Twitter Inc. TWTR,
+2.25%
Intel Corp. INTC,
-2.86%
and others have announced hiring freeze.

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