Look out, Facebook: "OG Zuck" has returned.
There you are, clicking and clacking away at some code, when you feel a sudden chill in the air. Somewhere in the shadows, you hear a noise. Is that... the sound of a katana being unsheathed?
Okay, maybe he hasn't broken out the ninja sword in the office just yet. But after allegedly taking a gentler approach to his workforce during the pandemic — a time of growth for the social media giant — an unnamed former Facebook-turned-Meta employee told The Wall Street Journal that the mercurial attitude of its founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg appears to be changing once again.
At least for now, as investor pressure continues to mount on the longtime CEO, Pandemic Zuck is out — and a far more cutthroat "old school Zuck," the former employee told the paper, is back in.
The former metamate's observations come fresh on the heels of the firing of 11,000 metamates — a number amounting to about 13 percent of its former workforce — back in November. And roughly 10 percent of remaining Meta employees were just hit with subpar performance reviews, which per the WSJ have sparked fears that Zucko is planning yet another round of layoffs.
While firing another major swath of his company would be a pretty big deal, it wouldn't be a terribly surprising move considering some recent Zuckerberg comments. Last June, just a few months prior to the November cuts, the boar-hunting company overlord took the floor in a Facebook town hall to announce that "there are probably a bunch of people at the company who shouldn't be here."
And at the beginning of this quarter, while speaking to investors, he additionally declared that this would be Meta's "year of efficiency," part of which presumably means cutting costs. (To that note, the WSJ report noted that Meta's also due to cut bonuses.)
For its part, Meta claims the poor reviews are just business as usual.
"We've always had a goal-based culture of high performance, and our review process is intended to incentivize long-term thinking and high-quality work," a Meta spokesperson told the WSJ, "while helping employees get actionable feedback."
In any case: if "OG Mark," as the former employee put it, is back indeed, we would recommend that all in-HQ metamates brush up on their hand-to-hand — and, well, also sword-to-sword — combat. Maybe they can even use the company's VR headset.
READ MORE: Facebook Parent Meta Gives Thousands of Workers Subpar Reviews [The Wall Street Journal]
More on Old School Zuck: Former Employee Accuses Zuckerberg of Brandishing Ninja Sword When He Was Angry with Programmers