When You Die, Your Job Won’t Care

Susan Kelley
4 min readApr 25, 2023

So Why Are We Giving Them More Than They Need?

James Clarke is not unique, even in his monstrosity. In a recently leaked video, Clarke proved out just how destructive our workplaces have become.

In an email to employees on April 3, Clarke insisted that all who live within 50 miles of their new headquarters in Draper must return to the office four days per week beginning April 17. Clarke accuses staff of not working, or at the least of “quiet quitting,” and asserted that none could possibly “outwork” him.

What Clarke fails to mention is the multiple millions of dollars he earns for his (aparently superhuman) efforts. Nor does he note that at Clearlink, the average salary for a sales associate is $16.41 per hour, or that the average for a software engineer is $90k. Both are well below the industry average. According to Indeed, only 46% of Clearlink staff believe they are compensated fairly.

Clarke asserts, without any tangible proof, that many of the employees have not “opened a laptop” in 30 days. He claims also that some may be working two jobs. He also claimed that content writers were not working, but rather using AI to do their jobs. He further declares that women who are trying to raise their children and work are failing at both.

He lauded the sacrifice of a worker who sold the family dog.

Sold. The. Dog.

What’s important to recognize here is that Clarke or his managers would fire any staff member on a whim if they didn’t face legal clapback. That they would not for a moment consider the ramifications to that employee or their families.

COVID-19 changed things, that much we know. What Clarke demonstrated here was that he made a poor choice in opening a new headquarters, he wants to fill it with people, and he doesn’t care at what cost. CEOs and leaders can do this right now, because the labor market is flagging while a recession looms. They know there will be a surplus of staff soon, and it seems a good time to shore up.

What they lost sight of is that it is THEIR fault if workers are not actually working, and that forcing unnecessary workers back into the office will shrink, not expand, productivity. Good managers and mentors at companies with fair compensation and a humanistic approach tend to cultivate a strong, productive workforce.

Incentivize productivity before penalizing laziness.

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Susan Kelley

Susan is a runner, a mom of 3 grown children, and an avid traveler. She writes about humans, and wrote a book about false accusations of sexual assault.