ST. LOUIS, MO—Exhaling in relief after several minutes of listening intently to the company-wide meeting, employees at local marketing firm Trend Studios confirmed they immediately tuned out their CEO’s remotely delivered speech Friday as soon as he mentioned layoffs would not be necessary. “He just told us our Q3 profits weren’t great, and that the market has been difficult to predict lately, but—yep, there we go, I just heard ‘no layoffs,’ which is what I was listening for,” said account manager Aaron Fried, who reportedly joined all 180 of his coworkers as they proceeded to mute their audio, minimize the Zoom meeting’s window, and open a tab on their computer to see where they should order lunch. “I wasn’t sure where this was going with all the money talk, but that PowerPoint slide that read ‘Layoffs not required’ was all I needed to see. He’ll just use the rest of his time to pat himself on the back, deflect blame, and so on. But it’s such a load off knowing my livelihood isn’t in danger.” According to internal sources, the CEO then clarified that while mandatory layoffs were not necessary, avoiding them would be contingent upon 70% of the staff agreeing to voluntarily exit the company by the end of the day.