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Twitter boss meets employees’ anger over Musk attack at a company-wide meeting




Elon Musk’s Twitter profile is seen on a smartphone placed on printed Twitter logos in this photo illustration taken April 28, 2022. REUTERS / Dado Ruvic / Illustration

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April 29 (Reuters) – Twitter (TWTR.N) CEO Parag Agrawal tried to calm employees’ anger on Friday during a company-wide meeting in which employees demanded answers on how managers planned to deal with an expected mass exodus caused by Elon Musk.

The meeting comes after Musk, Tesla’s (TSLA.O) CEO who sealed a $ 44 billion deal to buy the company for social media, repeatedly criticized Twitter’s content moderation practices and a top executive responsible for setting guidelines for speech and Safety.

At the internal town hall meeting, which was heard by Reuters, managers said that the company would monitor staff reductions daily, but it was too early to say how the purchase agreement with Musk would affect the retention of employees.

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Musk has urged lenders to cut board and executive salaries, but exact cost cuts are still unclear, according to sources familiar with the matter. A source said Musk would not make decisions on cuts until he takes over ownership of Twitter. read more

“I’m tired of hearing about shareholder value and fiduciary duty. What are your honest thoughts about the very high probability that many employees will not want a job after the agreement is terminated?” asked a Twitter employee Agrawal, in a question read out during the meeting.

Agrawal replied that Twitter has always cared about its employees and will continue to do so.

“I think the future Twitter organization will continue to care about its impact on the world and its customers,” he said.

Managers said during the meeting that the departure rate for employees has not changed compared to the levels before the news of Musk’s interest in buying the company.

In recent days, Musk has tweeted criticism of Twitter’s top lawyer, Vijaya Gadde, who is a Twitter veteran and respected throughout Silicon Valley. Musk’s attack triggered a barrage of online harassment directed at her. read more

Employees also told executives that they feared Musk’s erratic behavior could destabilize Twitter’s business and harm it financially as the company prepares to address the advertising world in a presentation next week in New York City.

“Do we have a short-term strategy for how to deal with advertisers who attract investment,” asked one employee.

Sarah Personette, Twitter’s customer manager, said the company works to communicate frequently with advertisers and assure them that “the way we serve our customers does not change.”

After the meeting, a Twitter employee told Reuters that there was little confidence in what leaders had to say.

“The PR lecture does not land. They told us not to leak and do a job you are proud of, but there is no clear incentive for employees to do this,” the employee told Reuters, noting that compensation for non-senior employees are now limited due to the agreement.

Agrawal is estimated to receive $ 42 million if he is fired within 12 months after a change in control at the social media company, according to research firm Equilar.

During the meeting, Agrawal encouraged employees to expect changes in the future under new management, and acknowledged that the company could have performed better over the years. read more

“Yes, we could have done things differently and better. I could have done things differently. I think about it a lot,” he said.

Twitter declined further comments.

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Reporting by Sheila Dang in Dallas and Katie Paul in Palo Alto, California; Edited by Chizu Nomiyama, Kenneth Li and Daniel Wallis

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.



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