Tech layoffs shock young workers. Old people ? Not really.
“It’s a gift,” Mr. Pulliam said. “I don’t think that story is being told. It’s always dark and gloomy.
But for tech workers experiencing their first economic downturn, the cuts have been eye-opening. Ms. Chang studied product design in college with the aim of joining a tech industry that seemed recession-proof. Getting fired from Lyft shook that faith.
Erin Sumner, a software recruiter at Facebook’s parent company Meta, used to brag to potential hires that the company had been the fastest ever to $1 trillion. She said she would promote the company’s strengths even last year when its share price fell and its core business, digital advertising, struggled.
When rumors of layoffs began circulating last year, she assured her colleagues that their jobs were secure, pointing to the more than $40 billion in cash the company had in the bank. But in November, she was among 11,000 laid off workers.
“It was heartbreaking,” said Ms Sumner, 32. She found a new job as a hiring manager for DeleteMe, a startup that aims to remove a customer’s information from search results. But she said she cringes every time she reads about other tech layoffs.
“I fear it will get worse before it gets better,” Ms Sumner said. “There are no guarantees. I was fired by the safest company in the world.
A similar reversal of fortune has challenged companies selling software services. Shares of Salesforce, an industry leader, fell nearly 50% last year as its sales growth slowed. The company had splurged during the pandemic, spending $28 billion to buy Slack Technologies. It went from 49,000 to 80,000 employees in two years.
At a town hall meeting last week to discuss the company’s decision to lay off 10% of its workers, Marc Benioff, the chief executive, tried to sympathize with his disgruntled staff by putting the cuts in context.