Ned Fulmer: Fired because of policy breach or bad look for the company?
Updated: Oct 25
I have been thinking a lot lately about workplace romance. The main reason for this is the recent scandal that hit The Try Guys, a group of guys who post entertaining content on YouTube. One of the four members of this group, Ned Fulmer, was caught cheating on his wife with an employee. Not only was this bad enough, but Felmer’s whole “brand” was being the “wife guy” due to his frequent mentions of his wife Ariel in videos.
This was a big shock to the fans of The Try Guys, but especially to Felmer’s fellow co-stars. Felmer put out a statement stating, “Family should have always been my priority, but I lost focus and had a consensual workplace relationship.” The official Try Guys Instagram put out a statement stating, “As a result of a thorough internal review, we do not see a path forward together.” Felmer was then fired from the company and removed from much of the group's content. The question arises in my mind: would Fulmer still have been fired if his affair had taken place with someone outside of his workplace?
After doing research, I could not find the official Try Guys company policy that all of their employees have to follow. However, I listened fully to the group's YouTube video addressing the issue titled “what happened” and their podcast episode titled, “ok, let's talk about it.”. These gave me a lot of insight into what happened. During these episodes, these Try Guys stated that the workplace relationship led to an internal review. Not only was it just a workplace relationship, but it was between a leading producer and an employee. Fulmer was fired, but the woman was not. I can not find information on whether or not she is still an employee.
From what the remaining Try Guys have put out, it seems as though they have the attitude of “we did not want it to come to this, but it was out of our hands.” In other words, even if they wanted to keep him, he broke company policy and had to go. I believe that even though, yes, he did break company policy, Fulmer would have still been let go if the woman was not an employee.
I looked up The Try Guys’ YouTube analytics, and I found some interesting data.
The Try Guys' official Instagram put out that statement on September 27. In the three days following that post, the views and estimated earnings of the channel dropped substantially. I think this is more than enough of a reason to want to let someone go from a company. If an organizational member becomes a detriment to the success of a company, it is fair to conclude that that person is now dead weight.
If we are looking at it solely from the standpoint that Fulmer cheated on his wife, and ignored the fact that he had a workplace relationship, I still think the Try Guys would have fired him. Because Fulmer’s whole brand was being the “wife guy,” and that was shattered by his actions, there was no coming back from this. His reputation was ruined, and subsequently, that reflects on his fellow Try Guy members. Not firing him would have been viewed by the world as siding with him. And siding with a cheater, whose whole persona is how much he is in love with his wife, can and would have destroyed the Try Guys. There was just no other way.
By Ana Wester
Ana Wester is a native San Diegan. She is a senior at San Diego State University. She is pursuing a bachelors degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Public Relations. After graduating, she hopes to work in PR for a sports team.