The heads of product, media, engineering, human resources, and Vine all departed for what Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey insists are unrelated issues, not at all indicative of any major problems at Twitter itself.
The suddenness of the mass exodus of so much of Twitter’s top staff, combined with the haphazard attempts to control the release of the story, indicate there may be more to the story than Dorsey’s statement is telling.
Here’s what’s so fishy: If your company is facing its lowest stock price ever and has suffered problems with employee retention in the past, and then five top executives all decide to leave at the same time, don’t you do more to calm investors than put out a press release after the news has already reached the public?
Now, maybe the announcement went off so poorly because the people who would have been in charge of the transition were the people themselves transitioning. But it also doesn’t bode well for the team Dorsey announced is taking their place.
In fairness, all the former execs themselves joined Dorsey on Twitter to share positive remembrances of their time with the company, and only the former Vine head, Jason Toff, has a new Silicon Valley address to call home: He is heading to Google to work on virtual reality. The rest of the group are all (coincidentally) planning to spend more time with their families, though media exec Katie Jacobs Stanton did make it clear in a Medium blog post that she is planning to enlist her services with the Hillary Clinton 2016 team. Here’s the breakdown:
Human Resources VP Brian Schipper has not released any public information on his departure yet.
Twitter is undoubtedly desperate for some good news to help bolster its fledgling business credibility. And according to a rumor circulating on Twitter, it may be about to try one of the oldest tricks in the book: A “high-profile” media director.
This much, at least, bodes well for Twitter. If any company can get ahold of a high-profile media sort, it’s the blue bird.