CEO posts crying selfie on LinkedIn after laying off employees
New York Post

A founder and CEO of a marketing company received a lot of flak online after he decided to share a tearful selfie when he announced he had to lay off some of his employees - and he has since responded to the backlash.

Braden Wallake, CEO of business-to-business marketing agency Hypersocial didn't hold back in sharing his emotions after he posted a photo of himself in tears alongside a lengthy statement that he described as the "most vulnerable thing," he'll ever share.

"This will be the most vulnerable thing I’ll ever share," his post began.

"I’ve gone back and forth whether to post this or not. We just had to layoff a few of our employees."

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While the CEO noted he had "seen a lot of layoffs over the last few weeks on LinkedIn," as a result of the economy, he revealed the reason behind his company letting go of staff was different - "Ours? My fault."

"I made a decision in February and stuck with that decision for far too long. Now, I know my team will say that "we made that decision together", but I lead us into it. And because of those failings, I had to do today, the toughest thing I've ever had to do.

"We've always been a people first business. And we always will be."

He continued: "Days like today, I wish I was a business owner that was only money driven and didn't care about who he hurt along the way. But I'm not.

"So, I just want people to see, that not every CEO out there is cold-hearted and doesn't care when he/she have to lay people off. I'm sure there are hundreds and thousands of others like me.

"The ones you don't see talked about. Because they didn't lay off 50 or 500 or 5000 employees. They laid off 1 or 2 or 3. 1 or 2 or 3 that would still be here if better decisions had been made.

The Hypersocial CEO faced criticism after he posted a tearful selfie in a post where he announced he had to lay off some of his staffLinkedIn/bradenwallake

Wallake went on to say that he hopes his employees know "from the bottom of my heart" that he "loves them."

"I've always hired people based on who they are as people. People with great hearts, and great souls.

"And I can't think of a lower moment than this," Wallake concluded.

The Linkedin post went viral with over 31,000 reactions but it received backlash as people felt that the boss could have used his platform to help the employees he laid off instead of posting an "out of touch" sad selfie.

One person wrote: "That selfie, geez. A little restraint might be good."

"How about using your network to help those employees find new jobs by tagging them and putting them in the spotlight, as opposed to whining about making difficult decisions as a leader and posting a crying selfie?" another person said.

"This is one of the most out-of-touch posts I’ve seen in a long time."

Someone else added: "Michael Scott would have definitely posted this," referencing The Office character.

As a result, it prompted Wallake to address the criticism and in a post on Wednesday where he referred to himself as "the crying CEO," and asked people looking for work to comment with their resume, desired job title, and qualifications, and called on employers to read the comments for "an opportunity to hire amazing people."

“Hey everyone, yes, I am the crying CEO. No, my intent was not to make it about me or victimize myself. I am sorry it came across that way. It was not my place to out the employees’ names publicly,” he wrote.

“What I want to do now, is try to make better of this situation and start a thread for people looking for work.”

Meanwhile, Wallake's original viral post remains on his profile.

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