India’s IT services provider company, Wipro Chairman Rishad Premji has said the company sacked its top 20 leaders in ten minutes.
The company laid off the employees after it was found to have committed a “huge integrity violation“. The policy is black and white for any kind of integrity violation or harassment, he stressed on October 19.
Speaking at the Nasscom Product Conclave in Bengaluru, he said, “We made that decision in 10 minutes. It was an important role that this person ran for the organisation but when the times are tough, and you have to make those tough calls.”
“There is a zero-tolerance policy for any form of integrity violation, any form of harassment. You can be me in the company, and I won’t have a job if I violate one of those two,” Premji said.
“We found that out and that person got fired effective immediately. This person was well connected and reached out through every form of medium to put a lot of pressure on the organisation to give him a clean, relieving certificate. We said we are black and white about this,” he said, asking startups to make tough calls.
In his advice to startups, he said they must focus on building valuable businesses instead of valuation. He added that founders must choose the right people for the companies.
“This is an obsession today on the unicorn status and how much you’re valued at… the journey to build sustainable businesses is long, it’s complex, it’s slow at times. If your journey is to make money quickly, the kind of organisation you will build is very different than an organisation that you want to last,” he said.
“The most dangerous people in organisations are people who are incredibly successful but leave 1,000 dead bodies on the way while they succeed. But that’s not sustainable. I think, in large organisations, it doesn’t take you very far. It only takes you to a certain point,” he added.
Earlier, Wipro laid off 300 employees who were found working with its competitor companies at the same time employment with Wipro.
Wipro Chairman Rishad Premji said on 21 September that their employment has been terminated for an “act of integrity violation”.
“The reality is that there are people today working for Wipro and working directly for one of our competitors and we have actually discovered 300 people in the last few months who are doing exactly that,” Rishad Premji said speaking at AIMA’s (All India Management Association) National Management Convention.
Rishad Premji even added, “There is no space for someone to work for Wipro and competitor XYZ and they would feel exactly the same way if they were to discover the same situation.”
He added that the point he was alluding was that Wipro employees are working directly for its competitors, which, he stressed, was a “complete violation of integrity in its deepest form”.
“I will stand by what I said. But I do think it’s a violation of integrity if you’re moonlighting in that shape and form,” he added.
Earlier, Wipro chairman Rishad Premji also described moonlighting as “cheating plain and simple.”
Hiring was at a slower pace for the quarter ending September 30, 2022. Wipro added 605 new employees. As of September 30, 2022, Wipro’s employee count in IT services increased to 259,179 from 258,574 at the end of June.
The company has reported an Attrition Rate of 23%, moderating slightly from 23.3% in the previous quarter.