An Open Letter to My Former CEO


Today is my last day with Company X. I’ve really enjoyed working with my colleagues.

That said, the events of two weeks ago really made me ill. To call an all-hands webinar, announce that the company is losing too much money, as a result of which 80 people will have their jobs taken away, then boom, meeting over. Not even the decency to take a comment or question.

I feel like those 80 people probably did not lose the money, probably just did what they were told to do to the best of their ability. The responsibility for losing the money lies with whoever told them what to do, starting with the CEO.

There’s a law of the sea, I think it’s a good law, that the captain goes down with his ship. Not that he grabs hold of 80 people and throws them overboard, then follows up with a completely tone-deaf email to the entire company calling it a “simplification.” I can’t see how you’ve simplified the lives of 80 people who have no job anymore, depending on how you define “simplification.”

I don’t have to go to work today because I have no job. That’s a simplification.

I don’t have to worry about what percentage of my paycheck to put in my 401K because I don’t have a paycheck. That’s a simplification.

You say you look forward to “continuing to lead” the company in these difficult times. Making bad decisions, losing lots of money, letting others take the consequences, insulting them, hiding from questions . . . there may be a word for all that but it’s not “leadership.”

Take a look on LinkedIn at all the Company X employees who now have #OPENTOWORK hashtags on their profile. So nobody can say you accomplished nothing as CEO. Granted, what you accomplished was a catastrophe, but it wasn’t nothing.

A friend of mine — he’s gay so he can do things like this — recently posted on Facebook: “Has anyone ever learned anything at a DEI training?” Of course the answer is no, but just in my short time at Company X, I had the opportunity to attend multiple DEI webinars, Gay Pride events, BIPOC mental health events, a 2-hour webinar on the correct use of pronouns . . .

And that’s a good use of time and money? Fitting employees into ideological straightjackets? It’s a total waste. What difference could it possibly make what pronouns you use to refer to people who aren’t even around anymore? You’re a failure who forced everyone around you to fail as well.

Finally, if you’re a grown man, but not an athlete or a Cuban bandleader, don’t go by the name Ricky. It sounds like you’re running a frat house, not a professional organization.

Thus spoke The Programmer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *