During a now-viral Zoom call, the CEO of New York-based online mortgage lender Better.com has laid off 900 staff, then chastised the ex-employees for supposedly "stealing from our customers" by not being productive.
Better.com Fires 900 Employess
The company's CEO, Vishal Garg, announced the mass firings to affected employees in a Zoom call, a tape of which was later put on TikTok, YouTube, and other social media accounts.
According to the New York Post, Vishal said "This isn't news that you're going to want to hear ... If you're on this call, you are part of the unlucky group that is being laid off. Your employment here is terminated effective immediately."
Garg stated on the call that this is his second time in his career doing this, and that the last time he did, he cried and expressed that he does not want to do anything like this in the future.
Better.com Lay Off
The 43-year-old said the "industry has changed" and that the company needed to shrink down in order to react to the changing housing market, which appears to be cooling after a pandemic-fueled boom.
However, Garg did not reportedly specify the company's $750 million financial infusions from investors last week on the call.
The CEO was eventually identified as the unnamed source of a nasty blog post on the professional network Blind that lambasted the Better.com staff.
In the blog post, he commented that at least 250 people in Better.com that were terminated were working an average of 2 hours a day while clocking 8 hours+ a day in the company's payroll system, which later he added that those employees were "stealing" from him and "stealing from their customers" who diligently pays the bills that allows them to get paid in the first place.
As per reports, Garg has admitted to writing those remarks.
Garg told the laid-off employees on the Zoom call that the business will provide four weeks of severance pay, one month of full benefits, and other benefits as part of a package.
Furthermore, the CEO said on the call that the layoffs were caused by a combination of low productivity and changing market conditions.
He then expressed that the company began evaluating staff productivity statistics four weeks ago, including missed phone call rates, the amount of inbound and outbound calls, employees arriving late to customer meetings, and other measures.
In addition, Garg stated that as the company decreased its hiring pace, it has noticed some concerning numbers, including a number of customers that were not able to receive the service they needed from their partners.
Who is Vishal Garg?
Better.com was launched in January 2014, and Vishal Garg has been the company's CEO since then.
Vishal Garg is a degree holder in Finance and International Business from New York University.
According to HITC, he left his work as an analyst at the age of 21 to create a private student lending organization, which was ultimately bought by another corporation.
In addition from being CEO of Better.com, Garg is a founding partner of One Zero Capital, an investment holding company.
Garg's personal net worth and salary are unknown, however, The Daily Beast reports that he obtained a $25 million bonus in 2020.