What Facebook should have said when advertising boss Carolyn Everson left
Last week, one of my best friends, Carolyn Everson, left Facebook. And although I still consider her as family, I have no more information than anyone reading the press reports about her departure. That said, after more than 10 years overseeing the majority of revenue, which comes from advertisers, bringing the company to over $ 80 billion and pushing investor growth from the public offering to the staggering stock price of ‘Today, Facebook publicly said these few words about Carolyn’s Departure:
“We wish Carolyn the best as she enters a new chapter,” a Facebook spokesperson said. “We are grateful for his contributions. “
Eighteen words. It’s all for the most powerful nobody (not just a woman) in advertising, which helped take Facebook from a behind-the-scenes operation to a powerhouse controlling more than a quarter of global digital advertising and skyrocketing the introduction’s stock in Stock market at today’s close that is sure to climb from the foundation built by Carolyn Everson. Not “contributed”.
To add insult to injury, the statement was released by an anonymous “spokesperson” and not by Mark Zuckerberg himself, although it appears she left on her own terms. Leaving on its own terms, especially for women, historically and apparently in this case, does not suit a tech industry that still behaves openly and indirectly in a misogynistic manner that many have attributed to “Well, this is how male engineering dominates Silicon Valley works. To that I say, “Bullshit. It’s time for a meaningful change. The handling of Carolyn’s departure, compared to how Facebook and the industry have treated men who leave on their own terms, is very different. More so, we still do this even when these men are a far cry from the incredible and essential role Carolyn played in making a business as successful as Facebook and its bosses among the richest people in the world. Not to mention that it paved the way for new forms of advertising that will forever change the media landscape. Most importantly, Carolyn is one of the greatest leaders in business and has led many people simply through her honest, loving and responsive work ethic.
Let’s talk about the word “contributions” used in the hollow statement. I couldn’t think of a more understated word to describe the invaluable and lasting mark that Carolyn has left on the business, pioneering pathways for the media industry, and dare I say, using her position to improve. humanity through its many charitable acts and contributions. . In fact, I’m not even sure I can come up with a single appropriate word to counter the abysmal ‘contributions’, but I know for sure that it has been much bigger, more impactful, and certainly lasting beyond its time with l company, and frankly, a day far and away on the planet.
Rather than working in frustration at the continued depreciation of women and minority leaders in subtle and direct ways, I would like to offer the words we should have heard and read from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg regarding the departure of Carolyn:
“We are sad to announce the departure of one of our key leaders and pioneers, Carolyn Everson, who told us that she would like to pursue other interests after more than a decade dedicated to us. Carolyn was truly the conscience and the heart of our company which touched everyone who worked with her, our company and many clients. She pioneered a new vanguard in digital and social marketing that will endure long after her time here while helping us reach heights that have exceeded all expectations and delivered more than we could ever imagine to our company, investors and the world of the billions of Facebook followers. .
“We are very fortunate to have Carolyn for over 10 years when we know there are many other opportunities available to her. We couldn’t have endured some of the problems as a business without its strong moral compass and constantly reminding ourselves of “the right thing to do.” Carolyn will always be a part of the Facebook family, and we can’t wait to see how she makes the world better with her tireless passion, whether it’s building a business or devoting time to her many worthy causes, from WE to gun safety in America. Carolyn, you are truly remarkable, and we are eternally grateful for making Facebook, Facebook. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, your Facebook family.
For such smart, accomplished business leaders, and now among the richest people in the world thanks in no small part to Carolyn, how could Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg not handle this more compassionately, appropriately, and with more kindness to both her, the billions served by them, and the many people left on Facebook who will carry on Carolyn’s legacy? Maybe Facebook and the entire tech industry are so systemic in behavior and repetitive actions against women (and those from diverse backgrounds) that they don’t even realize how lame the public statement was. or how insulting it was to have another unnamed woman, rather than Zuckerberg himself, as a spokesperson.
Finally, Facebook’s handling of the departure of a female executive is a lesson for all women and people of diversity that even the biggest and most valuable name in tech has not made progress on equality in the world. the extent to which he certainly declares or behaves. If the company treats someone like Carolyn with such disrespect, imagine how they would treat someone of seemingly “less” stature, notoriety, and impact. Actions speak louder than words, even though those words are posted on Facebook. I hope Facebook learns from its first mistake without the heart and conscience of the business guiding it.
For Carolyn, I join the world in reaffirming that whatever she does next will be more meaningful, bolder and more brilliant than anything she has done to date. For women and people in marginalized communities, learn a lesson from Carolyn’s enormous success and realize that there is nothing you cannot accomplish, regardless of what others do or say.
Michael D. Kelley is an author, editorial contributor, reporter and executive producer with Equal Entertainment, of which he co-owns with his life partner. He resides in Pompano Beach, Florida, and Provincetown, Massachusetts.