A recently fired Zynga employee was handed his walking papers via a form letter that was simple addressed to “Departing Employee” and now that work is opening up about Zynga and its “terrible” business strategy.
With Zynga recently reducing nearly 20 percent of its workforce we knew it was only a matter of time before someone revealed the company’s secrets.
In a Reddit IAmA the employee was asked if Zynga had a sound business strategy to which they revealed:
Oh hell no. Their business strategy is terrible.
Their major issues are the inability to adjust to the changing market. They did great when Facebook gaming was on the rise, but now it’s declining and Mobile is on the rise. They’re trying to change over, but employ too many of the same game development “best practices” that were developed for Facebook games. These just don’t translate to the mobile market, which is why they’re suffering in that market.
There’s also lots of other issues internally.
A lot of micro-management from the top down that stifles the creativity and hinders the production of many games.
An over reliance on every game being a blockbuster hit which makes the fun aspect of games suffer while making the money grabbing tactics all too transparent to the users.
And a serious lack of foresight over all. Too many major decisions are quick reactions to sudden changes in the market. If some games jumps to the top of the Top Grossing charts then everyone need to drop everything and change to follow it. Which wastes time, makes for bad design and ultimately puts projects behind schedule. It just means they’re always late to the party, and whatever game they’re trying to compete with has already faded away by the time their own version hits the market.
They rely too much on reacting to what is making money now, and too much on their own data. They don’t strive to make anything new or innovative and that’s no way to excel in the games market. You need to lead the pack, not try emulate the best practices of top games with the hopes that you can out perform and already established IP.
Check out the full Q&A thread on reddit.
Here’s a small pic of the “Departing Employee” layoff letter from the
fine management team at Zynga:
Are you surprised by Zynga’s employee reaction to being fired?