A CEO spoke about a drama-bomb in his 15-person company. The specifics didn't matter, but it was the usual issue that comes up in small companies. Someone is underperforming. Or, two employees are romantically involved. One employee punched another. Someone is stealing. A big customer just sent in a termination notice, etc.
"I'm worried about word getting out," she said.
I said, "Don't worry. Everyone already knows."
CEOs should always assume everyone they're the last to know.
While there are a few exceptions of employees, who exist outside any gossip chain, news of incidents travels faster than any companywide email blast ever will.
Is this is a bad thing or a good thing? I don't know. I know it's the way Americans act inside of companies.
The lesson for CEOs is don't worry that much about taking extra steps to keep things quiet. Everyone already knows so you can charge ahead.