- Hot on the heels of controversy, CEO Tony Fadell is leaving Nest Labs, an Alphabet-owned (parent company of Google) manufacturer of net-connected versions of household products like thermostats and smoke detectors.
- Fadell, who founded Nest and sold it to Alphabet, received media attention recently when articles at tech sites The Information and Recode unveiled a hostile corporate culture at Nest apparently driven by Fadell's negativity. According to the articles, the result was loss of top talent, poor product development and sluggish overall company performance.
- In addition, an ex-Nest employee recently filed a complaint with the NLRB against both Nest and Google, primarily based on the allegations that Nest fired him for posting content critical of his employer (specifically Fadell) on a private Facebook group, a charge that if true, could lead to fines and other sanctions against Nest and Google.
Regarding the NLRB situation, an anonymous Nest employee told The Information (also reported by Business Insider) that the fired employee told a Google security investigator he didn't leak the negative memes to Recode or other reporters, but he had been posting different memes to Facebook. He was soon fired.
According to his lawyers, Nest and Google clearly violated the law. Facebook likes and other posts critical of an employer have been established as protected speech in earlier cases, though Nest may have other ideas while defending this specific charge.