Jason Fried , Basecamp founder and CEO, posted on his website about the policy changes at the company. The company has decided not to allow employees to discuss politics on its internal accounts.
There was an outcry from the public and employees voicing their disapproval of policies and explaining why they were created. The blog post was revised several times and almost a third of employees accepted buyouts or left. However, it is not clear if Fried will make any further apologies. There are still claims made by employees that have not been addressed.
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Jason Fried ( Basecamp CEO) has apologized to for the policy changes he announced last Wednesday, which ultimately led to a third of the company’s workforce leaving.
Fried stated that the policy changes we made felt simple, consistent, and reasonable. It caused cultural disruptions in ways that we didn’t expect. We are sorry. There is still much we can learn and reflect on.
The blog posting that led to the company’s terrible week was a list containing new company policies that prohibited internal “social and political discussion”.
Today’s political and social waters are extremely turbulent. They are even more challenging at work.
Casey Newton (The Verge contributor Editor) later reported the original motivation for writing the letter was internal disagreements over a list of Basecamp customers with “funny names”. Employees deemed their inclusion inappropriate and racist.
Fried’s first blog post received immediate backlash. David Heinemeier Hansson, co-founder of the company, posted a few days later that detailed a severance program for employees who weren’t happy with the company’s current direction. No questions asked. “We’ll help those who don’t see a future in Basecamp under this new direction any way we can.
Newton reported on Friday that some employees were forced to accept the severance package. Singer was only 18 years old.
Fried’s Tuesday post contained an apology, but did not address Singer’s situation. It also didn’t outline any changes Basecamp would make.
The second message we send to our staff is: We know it can be hard to let go of coworkers. We are thankful that you are still with us.
Fried’s latest post assures customers that Basecamp will continue supporting them. “
Fried ended his speech promising to “regroup, rebuild” before returning back to the business of making great software. But he did not give details on how that would look. Fried said, “Regroup and rebuild” after his speech. “We will continue to be in the business until the end. “