Publix Employees Are Ridiculing This 'Propaganda' Training Video

Publix has long been known as a place "where shopping is a pleasure." But working there? That seems to be a different story. The grocery giant is getting dragged by some of its employees since they viewed an underwhelming new employee benefits video. Many are dubbing it "propaganda," and are expressing their discontent on an unofficial sub-Reddit thread, r/publix.

"I just finished watching the 2021 PEBS (benefits video) there was probably 30 seconds about our actual benefits and the rest is Publix talking about how great they are and how much they have done for everyone except for it's employees," writes u/Phdinmemology. The user goes on to note that the employees profiled in the video are limited to customer service employees or managers employed by the chain for under one year. "All the departments that have been getting screwed with hour cuts and increased workload aren't in the video." 

The discontent is exacerbated by the store's first-quarter 2021 success. Publix recently reported $11.2 billion in sales, with net earnings of $1.5 billion. This marks a 124% increase over the first quarter of 2021, according to the trade publication Winsight Grocery Business.

Further fanning the flames are allegations that Publix employees are under orders to keep their opinions to themselves. "We were supposed to talk to associates about being careful about what you post online because you are always a representative of Publix, whether you're off the clock or on," recalls Reddit poster u/flightofthemerlin. The discussion was apparently necessitated by a Publix-critical TikTok that was circulating at the time.

Publix employees annoyed about social media paradox

Conversations like that aren't unusual, though. Many corporations and smaller businesses have employee codes of conduct that include social media guidelines, such as the sample policy from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, which, in part, states, "Employees should be aware that [Company] may observe content and information made available by employees through social media. Employees should use their best judgment in posting material that is neither inappropriate nor harmful to [Company], its employees, or customers."

However, the timing of the video is questionable, according to the thread. "This video comes out after Publix has essentially censored us from posting anything negative about them on social media. It seems like they don't want any of the negative things that they have been doing to get out and are trying to get all the new employees on their side," says u/Phdinmemology.

According to the thread, it seems like some employees are just irate enough to take their complaints to the next level. u/Phdinmemology says, "I already attempted to contact the local news station but I haven't heard anything back from them yet. I was half joking with my friends that we should do a walk out one day. Just nobody come to work and see if that brings some attention to the situation."