How Startup CEOs Navigate a Crisis

A CEO has one job during a downturn, and it’s not the one you think

Joe Procopio
5 min readJun 6, 2022
image by mindandi on freepik

Will your company be able to hang on to its most valuable employees through the toughest times?

It’s no secret that holding on to top talent is difficult right now, for a variety of reasons:

  1. The pandemic lockdowns started a series of economic earthquakes that led to panicked companies shedding worthy employees.
  2. The mainstream adoption of remote work opened up new opportunities for all kinds of talent at almost every level, otherwise known as the Great Resignation.
  3. Now the pressures of rising inflation mean even more employee shedding, whether those employees are good, bad, or average.

The common thread through all of these scenarios is that loyalty on both sides is at an all time low. The result is that the most skilled people are incentivized to go elsewhere, usually for the most money or the most freedom.

I’d say it’s time to throw out the rules and do whatever it takes to retain your best people. Because they’re the ones who are going to navigate your company through the storm, not you.

“They’re All Going To Leave”



Joe Procopio

I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. NLG pioneer. Building & GROWERS. Write at and More at