It may have been one of the worst layoff memos of all time. After beginning with a breezy “Hello there,” Microsoft honcho Stephen Elop’s July 17 all-staff email stumbled obliviously downhill.
The first 843 words expounded on innovation and markets. Astute readers might have started worrying the 10th time Elop used the word “focus” during his protracted wind-up. Only in the 11th paragraph did he deliver the news: Microsoft was planning “an estimated reduction of 12,500 factory direct and professional employees.”
Advice: If you’re announcing plans to cut thousands of jobs, just say so.