Braden Wallake was pretty much unknown before this week.  He was the CEO of a company called HyperSocial, which specializes in optimizing Linkedin posts. 

Well, he didn’t need to hire his own company to get a post of his to go viral; he did that all by himself because of the photo accompanying it.  He posted a tearful selfie, red eyes, a sad face, and actual tears on the photo alongside an announcement that had had to lay off a few employees. 

Here’s part of what he wrote on the post. 

“This will be the most vulnerable thing I’ll ever share. Days like today, I wish I was a business owner that was only money driven and didn’t care about who he hurt along the way. But I’m not. So, I just want people to see, [sic] that not every CEO out there is cold-hearted and doesn’t care when he/she have to lay people off. I’m sure there are hundreds and thousands of others like me.” 

Not exactly the strongest look for a CEO.

The post took off, and a lot of people liked the softer side of a boss, and it had over 20,000 likes on the first day. 

But you know there were haters too. “Cringeworthy.” “Tacky.” Those were a couple of words that appeared more than a few times in the comments. 

Motherboard interviewed Wallake, and he told them he had had to let two employees go.  He laid one off himself and watched as his “girlfriend slash business partner” relieved the other of her duties. 

He was still feeling the pain a couple of hours later when he decided to share his feelings with that Linkedin post. Here’s more from his interview with Motherboard. 

“I was just sitting here at my desk, just kind of crying, I guess, and decided to make the post because I have seen a lot on LinkedIn recently of how awful business owners and CEOs are for laying off their employees and that they’re laying off employees while they’re getting their third house in the Bahamas or wherever.”

Hey, CEOs are human too. We get it. No word on if he wishes he had used a crying emoji instead of the selfie. 

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