One thing that defines every company in the world is its culture. Even the most successful company can be a toxic place to work unless its leadership pays attention to its social climate. Some companies survive on offering a strong product with good value but in a world driven by social media this is becoming a weaker option all the time. When negativity began to circulate surrounding the culture at Activision Blizzard, CEO Bobby Kotick put his money where his mouth is.
In July, Activision Blizzard found itself defending several lawsuits filed by government agencies which outlined perceived issues in the company culture. About the same time, an advocacy group formed and issued a list of demands. The company responded quickly and significantly.
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One of the most noteworthy changes involved Bobby Kotick himself. The major shareholders of Activision Blizzard recently approved a compensation package in excess of $150 million. Bobby requested a huge pay cut putting his earning at about $62k annually. He will remain at that earning level until the company achieves diversity, equity, and inclusion, as assessed by the board of directors.
The company also identified certain problematic people. They identified these people while investigating some of the claims in the lawsuit. Severing ties with these individuals was a definite assurance to those who filed complaints that their voices are being heeded. The company takes every team member seriously and works to maintain a safe and healthy work environment.
Bobby Kotick recently issued a letter outlining some of the improvements. One of these improvements is a zero-tolerance policy regarding harassment of any kind. They also plan to increase the number of women and non-binary folks employed by the company to 50% of the workforce. They have also decided to eliminate forced arbitration of certain complaints, allowing employees to choose whatever method of redress they prefer if a situation should arise.
Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard, is working hard to improve the company culture to make it a safe space to work, and a career opportunity to make anyone proud.