Monday, April 23, 2012

Unhappy with your job? DON'T write a blog

I've come across two unhappy employees who left their organizations and wrote about it that was published in top news websites and blogs. Recent one is about Max, an unhappy ex-Microsoft employee who was fired for being rebellious. He writes on TechCrunch,

"There is no creative tension, no vision these days. Left to Microsoft’s hands we’d still be toiling on overheating Vista desktops.
They called it out in my performance reviews: I lacked “respect for authority.” “Microsoft people are well-tenured,” said my boss once. Many employees are with Microsoft for 15 years or more. Sidestep hierarchy and tenure at your own peril.

I became cynical about the whole process. I was seen as a “rebel” and the leadership team began to marginalise me. My planned and promised promotion was cancelled.

Month after month, what I saw as a dubious case was put together. Official HR warnings were sent. My time ran out. I was offered 12-weeks’ pay for an amicable departure. Instead I decided to escalate the thoughts above to the highest echelons of Microsoft.
In a time of disruptive new technologies and competition, I believe Microsoft, and each organization within, should lead by example. We cannot afford not to.
Within hours of sending this email I was summarily fired and escorted to the door, days short of my 5-year anniversary with Microsoft."

Such bad information definitely affects stock price of a firm. Recent research points to the fact that user generated content (UGC) affects stock price as it transfers information otherwise unavailable or inaccessible to investors through the sharing features of internet. It did affect the stock price of Goldman Sachs when an employee resigned moments before his article titled "Why I Am Leaving Goldman Sachs" featured in the opinion section of New York Times.

Organizations need to take care. A fired employee will have an angry tale to tell. Negative word of mouth spreads faster. But the issue is not of stock price. If an employee has a compelling storing, it means that there is a serious concern about the long term prospects of the firm. Since his story is about his concerns about cost-cutting and productivity, you shouldn't expect Microsoft to save billions by cutting costs. Are they looking to cut costs? Maybe not.
It may just be about innovation but his critique about windows 8 is not at all convincing, rather too naive.

If you are still unhappy about your job, before writing (an email) or a blog post, just think, what are you unhappy about. Better, search for a job that you feel might keep you happy or better take the lead. The problem in writing a blog is similar to the problem faced by Nouriel Roubini. You may anticipate the collapse of the housing market, but won't be taken seriously. Moreover, you are pointing the arrow at those who directly impact your bread and butter. They'll for sure be taken away.

Still unhappy? Don't be public about it. Writing about it or simply "bitching" about it is like trying to settle scores. It is not going to help. That is not your job.