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Sherwin-Williams Fired A College Employee Because He Made Mixing Paint Look Cool On TikTok

(Buzzfeed) - Tony Piloseno said that for months he'd been pointing to his viral account as an example of what Sherwin-Williams could do on social media and by marketing their brand to a younger audience.

But instead it led corporate personnel to investigate his social media account, and they ultimately fired him after determining he was making "these videos during [his] working hours" and with company equipment.

According to termination papers Piloseno provided to BuzzFeed News, the official offense the company handed down to him was "gross misconduct," which included the offenses of "wasting properties [and] facilities," and "seriously embarrass[ing] the Company or its products."

"They first accused me of stealing — I told them I purchased all my paint," he said. "They made me answer a bunch of questions like when I was doing this, where, if there was anyone in the store while I was doing [filming]. There was never anyone with me while I doing it."

On the one hand: I can sorta, somewhat, almost, very nearly understand where Sherwin-Williams is coming from. If an employee was using company product and company time to make these videos, you can't idly sit back and just let that slide. 

But on the other, more correct hand: this is why old people shouldn't be allowed to speak out loud. The only thing akin to the boringness of watching paint dry is grass growing. No one likes to paint. It's a brutal chore that people try to avoid at all costs. That's why the elder generations had a tremendous wall paper obsession. The fact that anyone could gain any semblance of traction and popularity by mixing paint should have instantly propelled him to CEO of Sherwin-Williams. Naturally, they opted to take the MLB approach and fire him for not having the expressed written consent of Hubert Q. Sherwin before busting out his phone for all of five minutes on the job. 

This was free, word of mouth advertising on behalf of an employee. It was value-added that he was making these videos. The fact that he made a deck to pitch to the sales department and they told him to fuck himself is what I really have a problem with. A lot of people find it hard to grow within a company these days. There aren't clearcut pathways to promotions. The majority of people I know are constantly going from job to job, seeking minor bumps in pay and slightly more dignified titles, before often heading back to where they first began using that "experience" they gained elsewhere as the only way to "earn" a promotion. Here you've got a kid adapting to modern times, showing initiative and figuring out how to advertise without costing the company a single dollar. It was organic, it worked, all it needed was to be embraced by the powers that be and it could've taken off to another level. Instead he was immediately fired. Makes sense. You don't want to embrace it and just want him to do it outside of company time and not use the extremely cool mixer we all want to play with at Home Depot? Extremely understandable. But you fire him because someone called and asked if you can really put blueberries in paint and now it's a story where you look old and out of touch. 

Can't wait to see what the Sherwin-Williams sponsored TikToks look like in two years when the app is dead and they're spending tens of thousands of dollars on sponsored posts. I'm sure those will be good and definitely not suck ass. 

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