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The Duke of Sussex was criticized on social media after he had advised people to leave their jobs in favor of their mental health
‘Privileged’ Prince Harry has been slammed on social media and labeled a hypocrite after advising people to leave their jobs in favor of bolstering their mental health during an interview about his position at startup company BetterUp.
The 37-year-old Duke of Sussex famously left his ‘job’ two years ago to live in California after departing from the Royal Family with his wife Meghan Markle due to a ‘lack of support and a lack of understanding’ and also claimed he had been financially cut off from them.
On Monday, Harry discussed his role as ‘chief impact officer’ with California-based mental health start-up BetterUp.
Harry said that the world was at the ‘beginning of the mental health awakening’ and spoke about ‘continuing to pioneer the conversation’.
Social media users on Twitter were quick to criticize the ‘woke’ prince, who is sixth in line to the British throne, as he continues to live a luxury lifestyle in a $14 million Montecito mansion he owns with Markle. The couple also have a $25 million Spotify deal and a $150 million contract Netflix.
‘Prince Harry says that we should all leave R jobs if we aren’t happy. What about hospital porters hotel workers, women & men just grateful they have work. #princeharry UR so out of touch with real everyday working class people. U have become a figure of laughter and embarrassment,’ @ducchessfake007 tweeted.
Online users noted his ‘privilege’ as average working class people could not afford to quit their jobs for mental health reasons mainly based on financial reasons
‘So multi millionaire Prince Harry who has never held down a proper job in his life and has never had to worry about paying bills says quitting jobs brings joy and it’s actually good for ‘self awareness. Couldn’t make it up, please someone, anyone, make it stop!,’ @helen_spirit1 tweeted.
‘Unfortunately, for an average person, especially one who lives paycheck to paycheck, one who doesn’t have a trust fund…it’s extremely hard. Joy is not always the goal, getting paid and providing for the family is’ @Tissework tweeted.
They also noted that not everyone had millions stashed away already and could not afford to leave their jobs for mental health reasons as they needed paychecks to survive.
‘Not everyone has £30million tucked away in the bank. I wonder if he’d give the same advice to people whose mental health is made worse by their marriage. Be quiet H, please.’
Harry spoke with US business magazine FastCompany on Monday about the world adhering to a ‘mental health’ awakening and leaving a job based on these reasons was something to celebrate.
It comes after a survey found last month that nearly a quarter of UK workers are actively planning to change employers in the next few months amid a ‘Great Resignation’ prompted by burnout and high vacancy numbers.
The poll of 6,000 workers by recruitment firm Randstad UK found 69 percent of them felt confident about moving to a new job over the next few months, while 24 percent were planning to change within three to six months.
Prince Harry talks about his work at California-based mental health company BetterUp, where he is ‘chief impact officer’, in a Q&A session with US business magazine Fast Company
Harry speaks in a discussion with Fast Company to help promote his work with BetterUp
He was asked about how BetterUp had adapted its strategy to address accelerated trends in the workplace such as increased burnout and job resignations.
He told Fast Company: ‘It brings us back to the thesis of BetterUp, and the work Alexi and Eddie and team have been doing for the last eight-plus years before I arrived, [and] also my personal belief and work in the mental fitness space.
Harry’s corporate buzzwords in interview
- ‘It has been an extreme pleasure to see that social impact is not just a silo to the business – it’s interwoven into all of the work we do at BetterUp.’
- ‘Product development and innovation is deeply intertwined with the positive social change we can make in the world.’
- ‘A big component of this mission is building awareness and continuing to pioneer the conversation’
- ‘With self-awareness comes the need for change’
- ‘The initiative or organization must reach a diverse audience in an equitable manner’
- ‘There will be more on the impact front of course, and I’m committed to ensuring the measurable and long-lasting impact’
‘While on the surface it looks like these last couple of years brought all these issues to the foreground, the reality is these struggles and issues have been brewing for quite some time. We’re just at the beginning of the mental health awakening.
‘This work has never been more important because people are finally paying attention, and a big component of this mission is building awareness and continuing to pioneer the conversation.’
Harry continued: ‘I’ve actually discovered recently, courtesy of a chat with [BetterUp science board member] Adam Grant, that a lot of the job resignations you mention aren’t all bad.
‘In fact, it is a sign that with self-awareness comes the need for change. Many people around the world have been stuck in jobs that didn’t bring them joy, and now they’re putting their mental health and happiness first. This is something to be celebrated.’
On Apple TV’s The Me You Can’t See earlier this year, Harry told series co-host Oprah Winfrey how the trauma of his mother’s death led him to use alcohol and drugs to ‘mask’ his emotions and to ‘feel less like I was feeling’.
It comes as Harry’s brother Prince William spoke about the impact of dealing with life and death moments while an air ambulance helicopter pilot.
The Duke of Cambridge became emotional when he described meeting a former patient.
William’s voice breaks when he recounts being introduced to the unnamed person who recovered, but not fully, following an incident dealt with by the duke and his former crew from East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA).
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave the Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey in London on March 9 last year, shortly before they officially stepped down as senior royals
BetterUp’s chief executive and founder Alexi Robichaux. In October, BetterUp raised £220million from investors – valuing the company at around $4.5 billion
BetterUp is based at these offices at San Francisco in California. The value of the start up has topped £3billion after securing new funding from some of Silicon Valley’s biggest players
BetterUp: The Silicon Valley start-up that has hired Prince Harry
BetterUp describes itself as company that ‘combines coaching with dynamic and personalised digital experiences to accelerate members’ long-term professional development and drive personal growth’.
It sells executive coaching and therapy services to individuals and large companies, and employs clinical therapists and ‘executive coaches’ on contract to provide those services.
One blue chip company that recently employed their services was charged $2,000 for six months of unlimited coaching for each employee.
Those who sign up for their app can receive one-to-one video therapy or coaching through the app.
It was founded by two USC graduates Alexi Robichaux and Eduardo Medina. Mr Robinchaux grew up in Dallas, Texas, and has described growing up with his father a biblical linguist who translates from Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew.
His mother is an immigrant from Greece who was an executive assistant at Texas Instruments. In high school he started a non-profit called Youth Leadership for America. Mr Medina is also a USC graduate who worked at management consultant companies Altamont Capital Partners and Bain & Company before starting BetterUp.
Speaking during an audio walking tour recorded for Apple, the future king described how he was ‘taking home people’s trauma, people’s sadness’ and it was affecting him by making him sad despite a happy home and work life.
William has spoken in the past about how working for the EAAA affected his mental health, but the audio recording, made while walking around the Queen’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk, reveals how the incidents still live with him.
While Harry receives a salary from BetterUp, the firm has not disclosed how much he is paid or if he owns shares or stock options.
Harry had previously held a 10-year career with the British Army where he began as a recruit in 2005 at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He was reportedly paid around $45,000 for his contribution.
BetterUp offers companies coaching regimes for their employees on topics ranging from mental fitness to nutrition and parenting. Its app costs around $240 per month for each user.
Customers include Google, the Hilton hotel chain and movie studio Warner Bros. The company recently announced plans to open a London office and hire 75 staff.
Harry’s comments come two months after it emerged that the value of BetterUp has topped $4 billion after securing new funding from some of Silicon Valley’s biggest players.
In October, BetterUp, which took on the Duke as ‘chief impact officer’ in March, raised $291 million from investors – valuing the company at around $4.5 billion.
One of the leaders of the funding round was Iconiq Capital, a secretive investment firm which has managed the money of tech billionaires including Mark Zuckerberg.
Other backers include Mubadala, a sovereign wealth fund connected to Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed.
The latest funding round takes the total amount the firm has raised to $585 million and follows a similar $122 million injection in February.
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