Way ahead of our upcoming newsletter on workplace politics, happenings in Basecamp brought a slice of the discussion right to our doorstep, so we are delving right into it.
It was like watching a block of falling dominoes and it got to a point where tweeps started doing a body count of those that had resigned.
As at the time we curated this newsletter, the number of resignations has gone up to 20 out of Basecamp’s staff strength of 57.
These resignations have cut across senior staff that have been there from the beginning to junior employees.
So, what happened? Wetin cause fight? Shey na Desmond Elliot? 😂
The founders of Basecamp: a company that makes project management, team communication and email software, introduced new policies
that basically banned the discussion of political and societal topics at the workplace and the involvement of the company in similar issues.
But dazz not all. It gets more interesting.
Basecamp withdrew certain benefits workers used to enjoy at the company.
These include a wellness allowance, farmer’s market share and continuing education allowance.
In Basecamp’s exact words:
’It’s none of our business what you do outside work and its not Basecamp’s place to encourage certain behaviors regardless of good intention’
We need to add though, that Basecamp has stated that they will be introducing a profit-sharing formula to replace the withdrawn benefits.
These are the things including other stated and unstated reasons that made a third of the company’s employees decide to throw in the towel.
Basecamp’s policy decision is pretty interesting because they wouldn’t be the first to do something like this.
The resulting effects of this decision have however raised concerns about the future of the company and how it will affect their company culture amongst other things.
Why did we bring this up? Well, we think it’s a pretty interesting point of discussion.
We want to get your thoughts on the issue especially in light of a company operating in Nigeria.
Would you as an employee be comfortable working in a company where you were not allowed to speak about a movement like #EndSars in the office?
Issues like the #NotTooYoungToRunBill, the proposed #SocialMediaBill, #EndSARS, #BlackLivesMatter, the #CryptoBan, #Okadaban or the gender inclusion drive embarked on by Kuda
, which was received with mixed reactions.
Or do you agree with the statement the co-founder of Basecamp made:
‘We don’t have to solve deep social problems, chime in publicly whenever the world requests our opinion on major issues of the day or get behind a movement…. These are all important topics, but they’re not what we collectively do here. Employees are free to take up whatever cause they want …but that’s their business not ours…we’re in the business of making software..and that’s more than enough for us.’
Do you agree that the primary aim of a company is building products and making profit without taking any part in political and societal issues? Should they fem, especially considering the treacherous business waters of Nigeria?
Do you think decisions like the one Basecamp has taken, is a way for companies to avoid real issues or sweep ugly truths under the rug as alleged by some parties?