BossFeed Briefing for January 28, 2019Last Sunday, an international survey conducted for the Global Economic Forum found that 75% of people trust their employers. Last Wednesday, several media companies announced layoffs of several hundred journalists. Last Friday the federal government shutdown ended after mounting pressure from airport workers. Today is the statewide lobby day for the big chain restaurant industry. And this Saturday is Groundhog Day.


Three things to know this week:


A Las Vegas steakhouse is selling an edible gold brick  — a dessert filled with chocolate ganache and Louis XII cognac caramel, and finished with a spray of edible gold. It reportedly “tastes like royalty”.  

Google filed a legal brief urging the US government to restrict workers' right to organizefor better working conditions just three weeks after thousands of Google employees around the world walked out in protest over the company’s handling of sexual harassment. Two weeks before that brief, the company’s CEO responded to the walkout by agreeing to make changes and end forced arbitration of some claims.


Philadelphia software company Wildbit adopted a four-day workweekto improve work-life balance. Productivity rose as well: the company launched more features in the first year of the four-day week than in the previous year.

Two things to ask:


Should we be worried about his family's welfare?BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti announced that the company is laying off 15% of staff to “achieve the right cost structure,” despite double-digit revenue growth in the past year. In his message to employees, Peretti noted that he cares about the people at BuzzFeed “more than anything other than my family.”


Got something to say? A statewide secure scheduling bill has been introduced into the State Legislature which would provide food & retail workers with advance notice of shifts, access to additional hours, and more input and flexibility. We built a quick tool to make it easy for you to tell your legislators why you want secure scheduling

And one thing that's worth a closer look:


About 60 million workers are covered by forced arbitration agreements which restrict their access to the courts and instead require labor rights claims to go to arbitration — but few people really know what arbitration looks like… until this eye-opening piece in Bloomberg. The subject of the case may be a former Wall Street hotshot trying to collect on a $1 million bonus, but the details are nonetheless startling, and undoubtedly worth a closer look (as is the lovely illustration). Most memorable perhaps is the arbitrator who denied that he had fallen asleep but did allow that “it’s a challenge for any arbitrator to have to keep paying close attention” because “sometimes the witness is very repetitive.” But the kicker is the straightforwardness with which a corporate lawyer explains the benefits of this system: there are usually more employees than managers on juries, and “every employee hates their boss,” which affects their outlook on legal claims. 


Read this far?


Consider yourself briefed, boss.

Let us know what you think about this week's look at the world of work, wages, and inequality!

Let us know what you think about this week's look at the world of work, wages, and inequality!