Skip to content

WeWork Employees Treated to DMC Performance and Tequila After CEO Detailed Mass Layoffs

(Credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival)

It’s unlikely that anyone who has recently survived a massive layoff has said to him or herself, “What would make me feel better right now is watching a hip-hop pioneer perform hits at an all-hands meeting where our CEO is taking tequila shots.”

And yet, that’s what apparently happened at WeWork in 2016. Here is a passage from the September 18 Wall Street Journal profile on Adam Neumann, CEO of the multi-billion-dollar office rental startup:

A few weeks after Mr. Neumann fired 7% of the staff in 2016, he somberly addressed the issue at an evening all-hands meeting at headquarters, telling attendees the move was tough but necessary to cut costs, and the company would be better because of it.

Then employees carrying trays of plastic shot glasses filled with tequila came into the room, followed by toasts and drinks.

Soon after, Darryl McDaniels of hip-hop group Run-DMC entered the room, embraced Mr. Neumann and played a set for the staff.

According to the WSJ, that set included the hip-hop group’s ’80s hit “It’s Tricky.” While some people danced, others were “stunned and confused,” per the report.

Call us crazy, but that does not sound like an appropriate time to rock a rhyme. A WeWork spokesperson declined to comment to SPIN on why the company thought it would be. McDaniels’ rep had not yet responded by press time.