Dehumanizing. Gut-wrenching. Slap in the face. Betrayed. Tech workers are using all sorts of emotional phrases to describe the layoff wave that has gripped the industry and become the talk of the business world, Avery Hartmans reported for Insider.
Photo Insert: A total of 40,000 employees have been laid off from Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, a nightmare come true for tech workers.
"I'm shocked and hurt and still processing," Katie Olaskiewicz, a former human-truths strategist at Google, wrote on LinkedIn last week shortly after 12,000 Google employees were let go.
"It's difficult when you feel betrayed, but there isn't really an individual you can direct your anger towards. You can work for one of the most esteemed employers in the world and still be reduced to a dollar sign," she added.
A total of 40,000 employees have been laid off from Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, a nightmare come true for tech workers. For years, the tech industry cultivated an attitude among its workers that their employment was something more than transactional — that they were part of a family working toward a common goal.
The tech layoffs have been starkly different from Wall Street, which has in recent months instituted its own rounds of job cuts.
More than 15,000 employees have been laid off from the likes of Goldman Sachs, BlackRock, Citi, and Morgan Stanley, with employees being swiftly and brutally shown the door. Banking jobs are ruled by two factors: Achievement and the cyclical nature of the markets.
There are no illusions that these jobs are anything more than a business arrangement. This isn't to say that the grinding, "chew 'em up and spit 'em out" mentality of Wall Street is the perfect way to treat employees.
For years, junior bankers have raised the alarm about the toll the system takes on their mental health, and many large financial institutions have taken steps to shift this culture.
Eden King, a professor at Rice University who specializes in industrial and organizational psychology, said some companies preaching the family mentality were using it as a smoke screen to extract more from their employees.
"Sometimes leaders use this sort of language, like, 'We're all part of the same family,' in a way that's inauthentic and, in fact, makes people disengage," King said.
"The idea that, 'Oh, we're all part of a family, but I'm going to ask you to work crazy hours and for little pay, and I'm not going to treat you with respect' — it rings untrue."