Earlier this week, it was leaked that Google would be giving all of its employees a 10% raise and a $1,000 cash bonus for the holidays. Google has announced that the employee who leaked the company-wide memo has been terminated.
According to Google, the raise was designed to boost company morale in the wake of some high-profile departures, but the mood was dampened when the employee who leaked the memo was let go for doing so.
Why, you may ask? What’s the big deal?
Generally speaking, salary information is supposed to be confidential even within a company. To discuss this type of information with the people you work with could cause serious work drama – for example, you’ve been working at a place for 2 years and the new hire is earning the exact same amount… wouldn’t you be a bit irked? Most people would, which is why in many employee handbooks, it is expressly noted that employees should not discuss salary information with others.
But the real issue at hand is that at the top of Google’s memo to its employees, was the header “CONFIDENTIAL: INTERNAL ONLY GOOGLERS ONLY (FULL TIME AND PART TIME EMPLOYEES)”. The employee who leaked the memo failed the realize that ‘confidential’ means DON’T give the memo to the press. Especally if it's in all capital letters.
Google was justified in terminating the employee; if someone can’t keep information about something as simple and mundane as a paycheck (even if that paycheck is going to be bigger from now on!), what other information can’t they be trusted with?
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