Screenshot from a video of Elon Musk on Oct. 26, 2022, carrying a sink into Twitter headquarters.
Photo: Twitter account of Elon Musk/AFP via Getty Images

Who’s out at Twitter as Elon shakes up company leadership

Protocol Workplace

Welcome back to our Workplace newsletter. Today: Execs are leaving Twitter as Elon Musk shakes up the company’s leadership and strategy (and reportedly plans to lay off 25% of the workforce). Plus, IT and engineering leaders tell Protocol how to create a great developer experience that also ties in to company goals. And: As we get ready for comp review season, Mercer reveals surprising data around how much of a budget increase tech companies are planning.

— Allison Levitsky, reporter (email | twitter)

Twitter purge

Days into Elon Musk’s tenure as “Chief Twit,” Twitter is in full purge mode. While Musk himself still somehow manages to find time to celebrate Halloween and tweet memes. The Washington Post reported Monday that Musk planned to lay off 25% of the company’s workforce “to start,” following internal conversations led by Musk’s longtime lawyer Alex Spiro.

  • Much about the layoffs, including when they might take place and how many employees might be affected, “remains fluid,” The New York Times reported, as the company identifies low performers.

Meanwhile, company leaders are dropping like flies. Musk has now dissolved Twitter’s board of directors and named himself CEO, the company disclosed to the SEC on Monday.

  • On Tuesday morning, Twitter’s chief customer officer and chief people and diversity officer both tweeted that they had resigned from their jobs on Friday. Musk also fired Twitter’s CEO; CFO; general counsel; and head of legal policy, trust, and safety, last week.
  • Given Musk’s need to appease advertisers, the resignation of chief customer officer Sarah Personette is particularly significant given her role as the company’s top ad executive. (And it came the day after Personette tweeted that she had “had a great discussion” with Musk, that Twitter’s “commitment to brand safety for advertisers remains unchanged,” and that she was “Looking forward to the future!”)
  • By Monday night, two other Twitter leaders had updated their bios on the site, Platformer writer Casey Newton tweeted, with head of product Jay Sullivan deleting his Twitter bio and GM of the Redbird core technologies group Nick Caldwell adding “former Twitter exec” to his. Bloomberg reported that Musk was expected to name new product leaders.

Neither Sullivan nor Twitter PR immediately returned requests for comment about the departures. Caldwell said he had “nothing really to add” about his departure.

For more updates, check our developing story on the Twitter transition.

Developer experience

Developer experience is not just about free lunches and ping-pong tables. Do your developers feel connected to your company goals?

For Protocol’s latest Braintrust, research editor Kevin McAllister asked IT and engineering leaders from Goldman Sachs, Atlassian, and Intuit about their tactics for tying developer experience to company goals. Among the suggestions: Treat developer experience like a KPI, focus on transparency, and make DX a “top company priority.”

Read the full story.


In conversations around pay equity and pay transparency, the stakes are high and the responsibility is stressful for HR. Learn how to confidently and capably discuss these topics with everyone from executives and managers to entry-level employees with three important steps.

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Raises are shrinking

Ready for comp review season? Tech companies are planning for lower-than-average merit increases this year, according to a recent report from the asset management firm Mercer.

  • Tech employers reported an average of 4.2% for their total increase budget for 2023, which is right on par with the national average across industries.
  • But for merit raises, tech companies are slightly behind the national average — coming in at 3.7%, compared to a 3.8% average budget across industries.
  • Although tech raises won’t be huge this year, average salaries in the tech industry are up more than the national average.

Some personnel news

Anyone else having a bad case of Great Resignation whiplash? It’s hard to keep up with which tech companies are growing, shrinking, floating, or sinking. We’re here to help.

⬇️ The lending company Upstart laid off 140 employees, 7% of its workforce, TechCrunch reported.

⬇️ The Apple execs leading the company’s online store and information systems divisions are leaving, according to Bloomberg.

⬇️ Foxconn workers fled the world’s largest iPhone factory, in Zhengzhou, amid COVID lockdowns, Axios reported.

For more news on hiring, firing and rewiring, see our tech company tracker.

Around the internet

A roundup of workplace news from the farthest corners of the internet.

If your boss doesn’t accept your social media friend request, maybe don’t keep asking? (Slate)

Welcome to the House of Web3. (Axios)

How to stay on top of Slack messages without losing your mind. (The Wall Street Journal)

These people were part of the Great Resignation. Now they have a lot of house cats.


No two recessions are alike. In fact, eight in ten workers reported looking for a new job before the upcoming market shift. Learn what HR can be doing to ensure meaningful retention today and in the near future.

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