At a companywide all-hands meeting this week, Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) chief Sundar Pichai juggled tough questions from employees regarding cuts to travel and entertainment budgets, managing productivity, and potential layoffs.
Employees questioned why Google is "nickel-and-diming employees" by cutting travel and swag budgets despite record profits and substantial cash reserves as it did after the pandemic. Pichai emphasized acting responsibly to tide through such critical situations, CNBC reports.
In July, Alphabet reported its second consecutive quarter of weaker-than-expected earnings and revenue. Third-quarter sales growth will likely dip into the single digits.
Also Read: Google Boosts Pay, Revamps Employee Promotions To Ease Tensions: CNBC
Pichai blamed an expanding bureaucracy at Google apart from the slowdown for the challenges.
Still, he sometimes sounded annoyed in the meeting and reminded staffers, "We don't get to choose the macroeconomic conditions always."
Google had canceled product launches and project budgets to tide through the slowdown and sought employee productivity suggestions.
Pichai did not elaborate on job cuts, and he also did not deny it.
Pichai dodged employee questions asking about cost-cutting executive compensation.
He told the employees not to correlate fun with money. They can still enjoy and party while keeping things small and informal.
Pichai disagreed with the characterization of shifting from "rapidly hiring and spending to equally aggressive cost saving."
Pichai acknowledged "still investing in long-term projects like quantum computing" and said that at times of uncertainty, it's essential "to be smart, to be frugal, to be scrappy, to be more efficient."
Pichai also acknowledged the challenges of traveling to the office, offering more discretion to the teams.
Price Action: GOOG shares traded lower by 1.24% at $99.30 on the last check Friday.
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