Economics/Class Relations

An SVB employee lost over $1 million

March 25, 2023
Hello, Insiders. Welcome to our Saturday edition — and the first full weekend of spring! I’m Lisa Ryan, an executive editor at Insider. Nicholas Carlson’s been on the West Coast all week, working out of our Los Angeles and San Francisco bureaus. He’ll be back with you Monday.

Here’s what’s on tap today:

— Lisa Ryan
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SVB survival story

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An anonymous Silicon Valley Bank employee gave Insider’s Darius Rafieyan and Mattathias Schwartz a firsthand view of the bank’s collapse.

“We had no idea in advance that any of this was going to happen,” the staffer said. “My team learned that the FDIC had taken us over during an internal team call, when it was reported on the news.”

The intensity of the crisis meant two or three hours of sleep each night. Some workers forgot to eat. Rank-and-file employees felt management did a “dismal” job of keeping them in the loop. They said it felt like being at their own wake.

Many SVB employees get more than 50 percent of their salary in equity. This staffer’s used to be worth more than a million. Now it’s gone to zero.

Want to keep up with Insider’s top stories throughout the day? Get updates on the go with our app.

TV travel, quiet firing, & more

Courtesy of HBO
  • Gen Zers are basing their travel plans around TV shows. The latest trend: This group of travelers is scrambling to book the hotels in Hawaii and Italy where “The White Lotus” was filmed. More here.
  • Companies are “quiet firing” workers. If you feel like you’re being pushed into resigning, don’t just sit back. Career experts say you should document what’s happening and talk to your boss or HR. What else you should do.
  • The top car trends — by drivers’ age groups. From Gen Z’s Toyota Camry to the boomers’ RAV4, here’s every generation’s favorite ride. Get the full list.

Remote work, Ozempic, & more

Novo Nordisk A/S; iStock; Robyn Phelps/Insider
  • “I’m a doctor who prescribes Ozempic to patients.” The doctor says he’s also lost 25 pounds himself by taking a shot of the buzzy weight-loss drug Ozempic (semaglutide) each week. Find out more.
  • “Why I left my costly life in Toronto to work remotely abroad.” Peggy Bree Tam works remotely from Colombia as a project manager for a Canada-based company. She said she’s never going back to Canada because life overseas is so much more affordable. Read more.
  • “I’m a software engineer who struggled with procrastination until I tried monk mode.” Cameron Perrin was struggling to achieve his career goals and getting derailed by distractions — until the productivity hack “monk mode” changed his life. Read more.

Money, happiness, & more

  • From $300-a-month rents to $1 cappuccinos, we rounded up 12 spots around the world where you can live affordably – take a look.
  • Finland has been named the happiest country for the sixth year running. See the 10 happiest countries in the world, ranked.
  • A former Google recruiter shares his best tips for landing a job in tech — and what can blow your interview.
  • Celebrity stylist Ty Hunter changed the style game for stars like Beyoncé and Billy Porter. Here’s how.
  • Xi Jinping snubbed Putin after their summit, calling a meeting of Central Asian countries as part of an audacious power play. More here.
  • “I made over $10 million in revenue on Amazon last year.” Deanna Slamans and her husband became full-time Amazon sellers in 2015. Read more.
  • An influencer tried working her East Coast hours from Mallorca, Spain, for a month. Her biggest takeaways.
  • A flight attendant reveals whether it’s OK to cut the boarding line and the correct way to ask for an upgrade. Find out here.
  • Food companies regularly discontinue items that don’t sell well. From Tab to Purple Ketchup, here are 12 products seemingly gone forever.

Your entertainment planner

  • “Succession” is back. The fourth and final season of the Emmy-winning series airs Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. Here’s what to expect.
  • March Madness continues: The annual NCAA tournament for men’s and women’s basketball kicks into the Elite 8 round. Here’s how to watch.
  • “John Wick: Chapter 4” is in theaters. The first three films are streaming — watch them before heading to the cinema. Plus, check out our review of the fourth installment.

Feeling stuck?

Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
A large Navy research vessel that once belonged to the late Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen tipped over — and now it’s stuck at a 45-degree angle. See photos.

Prep for ‘John Wick’

LA acting coach Raquel Gardner reacts to 12 iconic scenes from Keanu Reeves’ movies. From the mastery of his voice in “John Wick” to bringing emotion to his role in “The Matrix,” see how Reeves transforms for his work.

Ready for AI

With the unveiling of the highly anticipated GPT-4, it seems like a lot of white-collar jobs might soon be obsolete. We asked: Are you ready for this change? Here’s what you said:


  • “No, we’re not ready. This has the potential for more harm than good. Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.” – W.P.
  • “These tools have the capacity to eliminate a lot of white-collar jobs, which at this point make up the majority of jobs in most developed countries. As that happens, there will be massive unemployment. How will governments respond? The logical response would be the gradual development of some kind of Universal Basic Income. But it’s difficult to see governments in the US and UK moving in that direction.” – Bob
  • “Marketing and communications pros are jittery in 2023 as ChatGPT and AI pose an existential threat to our livelihoods. While these innovations seem threatening, they are also incredible time savers for our everyday activities. … Doubling down on what makes us human will make us ready for ChatGPT.” – Lisa

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This edition was curated by Lisa Ryan, and edited by Dave Smith, Jensen Rubinstein, Jordan Parker Erb, and Nathan Rennolds. Get in touch:

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