Mark Facebook has a message for Meta employees.

According to copies of his comments that were shared with The New York Times, the CEO of Meta said that the company was facing one of the worst downturns in recent history. He told Meta's 77,800 workers that they should prepare to do more work with less resources and that their performance would be graded more intensely.

The company, which owns Facebook, was lowering its hiring targets, according to the founder. He said that the company would bring on 6,000 to 7,000 new engineers this year, down from a previous goal of 10,000. Junior engineers will not be hired in some areas, but the head count will increase in other parts of the business.

"I think some of you might decide that this place isn't for you, and that self-selection is okay with me." There are a lot of people at the company who shouldn't be here.

The degree of difficulty that Meta is facing with its business is reflected in the C.E.O.'s comments. The company has struggled this year as it has gone from strength to strength in the past. Inflation and interest rates have caused upheaval in the global economy as they rise.

Meta is navigating tumult in its core social networking and advertising business. The CEO of Meta declared last year that his company was going to make a long-term bet to build the metaverse. He has been spending a lot of money on the effort.

Apple made privacy changes to its mobile operating system that limit the amount of data it can collect on its users, which is a blow to the company's advertising business.

This year has seen the first back-to-back profit declines in over a decade for Meta. In February, after a dismal financial report, Meta's stock plummeted 26 percent and its market value plunged more than $230 billion in what was the company's biggest one day wipeout. The company told employees in March that it was eliminating free services.

According to a copy of the memo that was read to The Times, Chris Cox, Meta's chief product officer, said the company was in "serious times" and that economic "headwinds are fierce."

In an environment of slower growth, teams shouldn't expect a lot of new engineers and budgets. We must be thoughtful about measuring and understanding what drives impact, invest in developer efficiency, and operate leaner, meaner, better executing teams.

The comments to employees were made by Mr. Cox and Mr. Facebook. The company has said publicly in earnings calls that it is being candid about its challenges and opportunities.

One employee who watched the call said that Mr. Zuckerberg appeared to be frustrated. An employee who spoke on the condition of not being authorized to speak said that after someone asked if the company would continue having Meta days, Mr. Zuckerberg paused and pondered about how to answer the question.

The C.E.O. said that the company needed to work harder than before and that it needed to turn up the heat on internal goals. He expected some degree of turnover from employees who weren't meeting their goals because of the intensified pace.

Mr. Zuckerberg said that he wasn't focused solely on profits and that he was willing to spend a lot on projects that mattered. The metaverse will be built with virtual and augmented reality over the next decade.

Mr. Cox stated in his memo that Meta was continuing to focus on investing in the TikTok-like video product, as well as improving artificial intelligence to help drive the discovery of popular posts across Facebook andInstagram. He said that Meta is working on making money from its messaging apps as well as looking to more opportunities in e- commerce sales.

The company's recruiting slowed this year after a surge of new hires during the Pandemic. Two recruiters who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to reporters said that the company was mostly hiring for vital positions.

Two people with knowledge of the company's plans said there were no plans to lay people off.