MySpace today announced plans to cut its staff by nearly 30%. Job cuts like these are always unfortunate for those affected, but it's important for the company's leaders to handle the situation properly from a communications standpoint in order to serve the company's best interests in the long-term.
In a prepared statement, Owen Van Natta, the company's CEO, said, "Simply put, our staffing levels were bloated and hindered our ability to be an efficient and nimble team-oriented company."
How do you think this word makes the departing employees feel? Valued? Appreciated?
And of equal importance, how do you think it makes the surviving employees feel?
I suspect that the word 'bloated' was specifically chosen to characterize MySpace's growing staff complement as something that happened by accident. Like eating too much at a buffet, for example. The right approach would have been for management to take accountability for the situation and outline their plan for continued growth and profitability. These people didn't hire themselves. Someone made these hires. And now, faced with a recession, and with Facebook and Twitter eating away at MySpace's audience, revenues are down.
The word 'bloated' is also getting extensive pick-up in the media as part of this story, including the New York Times.
The far superior quote was from Jonathan Miller, News Corporation's chief executive of Digital Media, who said, "MySpace grew too big considering the realities of today’s marketplace. I believe this restructuring will help MySpace operate much more
effectively both structurally and financially moving forward. I am
confident in MySpace’s next phase under the leadership of Owen and his