Great Talent, Bad Fit: Kraken CEO Tells “Unhappy” Employees to Commit or Leave

Jesse Powell, founder and CEO of popular cryptocurrency exchange Kraken, recently commented on the company’s latest corporate culture document emphasizing the need for a “crypto-first culture.”

Internal Debates on Kraken

According to Powell, Kraken recently had some heated internal debates, and a small group of 20 employees out of the company’s 3,200 staff were not “totally on board.”

The Kraken boss said instead of focusing on the firm’s mission, these “triggered” employees were upset about debates such as the use of pronouns and the N-word, the differences in human sex, being respected and offended, and being “harmed” by “violent” words.

Great Talent, Bad Fit

Powell further noted that although these “unhappy” employees have great talent, they are a “bad fit” for Kraken. According to him, during the bull market when crypto was “hot,” the company onboarded many new employees without emphasizing “culture and mission fit.”

The CEO added that everyone was able to get along because things were “rosy,” but that quickly changed when the situation started to look “grim.”

3/ How did this happen? Lots of hiring, fast, without enough emphasis on culture + mission fit, and at a time when crypto was super hot. Tons of amazingly talented people were looking for a seat on the next rocket ship, not realizing that crypto’s more of a rollercoaster.

— Jesse Powell (@jespow) June 15, 2022

Kraken’s employees now have the choice to commit to the exchange’s mission whether or not they agree with the culture document or leave the firm with a severance package.

Kraken is Hiring Despite Bear Market

Meanwhile, Kraken said it is on a hiring spree with more than 500 roles to fill throughout the year. The exchange noted that there would also be rehiring to fill vacant positions of employees who may leave the firm.

Kraken, just like Binance, is breaking away from the massive job-cutting norm established by other crypto firms due to the bear market.

As reported earlier, Gemini, Coinbase, and BlockFi plan to reduce their workforce by 10%, 18%, and 20%, respectively.

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