The company’s management team, including Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, is spreading to locations far from its Silicon Valley headquarters in an extreme test of the limits of remote work.
Naomi Gleit, the company’s head of product and one of its longest-serving employees, has moved to New York. Chief Marketing Officer Alex Schultz plans to move to the UK, and Guy Rosen, the company’s vice president of integrity, will move to Israel in the near future, a company spokesperson said.
Meanwhile Javier Olivan, Meta‘s
Chief Growth Officer, has split his time between California and Europe but plans to spend more time abroad, the spokesman said. Meta said last week it will double its Madrid office in Mr Olivan’s home country of Spain to add 2,000 people over the next five years.
Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, has spent the past few months traveling and working remotely from locations including Hawaii, Los Angeles and Cape Cod, according to people familiar with the case and the executive’s social media posts. The spokesman said Mr Mosseri has no plans to move permanently.
According to people familiar with the case, Mr. Zuckerberg also spent more time outside the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California. Zuckerberg regularly spends extended periods on his property in Hawaii and his other homes outside the Bay Area, the people said.
“The past few years have brought new possibilities around the ways we connect and work,” said Meta spokesperson Tracy Clayton. “We believe that how people work is much more important than where they work from.” He said Mr. Zuckerberg plans to spend more than half of his time in California and work remotely for the rest of the year.
In the short term, Mr. Zuckerberg will also have to sit without the counsel of his longtime No. 2 Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, who is taking a sabbatical this spring as part of the company’s program to take 30 days of paid leave every five years. offer .
The company embraces remote working after Facebook Inc’s name change. in Meta in October, when the company indicated it believes virtual first interactions are the future of the Internet. Particularly for work purposes, the company says it has invested in a range of technologies to make remote working more efficient, including video conferencing and business software tools.
Management’s exodus from Menlo Park comes as Meta deals with significant challenges for his company.
The company’s stock price has fallen more than 32% since it announced its earnings for the fourth quarter of 2021 on Feb. 2. That plunge cost the company more than $300 billion in market value. The decline was the result of a number of challenges Meta faces, including increasing competition from Chinese rival TikTok, a dwindling user base and continued impact on the company’s advertising business from privacy changes in Apple. Inc.’s
iOS that Meta said it expects to cost the company about $10 billion this year.
Having so many top executives spread across so many different time zones is a concern, as the company’s most recent quarterly results seemed to demand more of all hands on deck, said David Heger, an analyst at Edward Jones.
“Given the time the company is currently in power, it may not be the ideal time to experiment with your top executives working remotely,” he said.
Meta said in June it would allow all full-time employees to apply from home if their jobs allowed it, even as it has continued to add office space to accommodate the growing workforce.
This policy does not apply to all employees. Those working on hardware devices or the company’s data center infrastructure are still expected to come to the office.
Aside from these employees, Meta has moved to a hybrid model that allows most employees, including top executives, to work where they see fit. March 28 is the date the company will go back to work for those who are expected or want to go back to the office.
The company is in the early stages of building out the so-called metaverse, a term used to describe virtual worlds in which people can interact to play or work.
As Meta strives to build more products for its users that allow them to interact virtually online, having executives spread geographically could be an asset, said Stephen Lee, founder of Logan Capital, a registered investment advisor who has purchased Meta shares on behalf of Meta. customers.
“If you’re trying to develop the metaverse and develop workplace systems, learning by doing is probably not a bad way to do that,” said Mr. Lee.
Few, if any, other companies have taken management telework this far, said Peter Cappelli, a professor of management at the Wharton School.
When executives collaborate in person, they can collaborate, devise strategies, and build trust with each other, said Bill George, a senior fellow at Harvard Business School, where he is a professor of management practices. Being together physically can also help to create and maintain the company culture, for example by mentoring junior employees.
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“Your people want to see you,” said Mr. George. “They want to know you’re there. Yes, you can use Zoom or Microsoft Teams or something else to stay in touch, but there’s a lot to be said for attendance.”
Many executives moved to remote locations during the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, he said. But in most cases, Mr. George said, he thinks senior executives will benefit from being close to their team members.
“I’ve been to Hawaii, and I can tell you, you won’t get much work done there,” Mr. George said.
Mr. Zuckerberg has found ways to combine work and pleasure from Hawaii, posting on Instagram about his hydrofoil surfing adventures and demonstrating the potential to enjoy those activities in the metaverse.
—Emily Glazer contributed to this article.
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