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Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Wrote A 2000-Word Letter For His Employees He Never Sent.

| Published on September 25, 2019

The memory is still fresh in most of our minds, the memory of the year 2017 when one of the most renowned brands in the world was being thrown into Chaos.

Back in 2017, Uber CEO was forced out after a series of revelations for the company to the world. There were charges of sexual harassment, the discovery of Greyball and viral videos of Travis Kalanick, ex-CEO Uber berating a driver.

To add on, not only was Travis Kalanick suffering a hit in his professional life, but he was also left worried in the personal aspect. His parents suffered from an accident where he lost his mother and had to take a leave of absence for the recovery of his father.

The recent discovery?

Kalanick wrote a letter to his employees during that leave of absence, to his company and to the people that matter about his ills, the mistakes and how he plans to turn things around in the future. However, it never got the chance to see the daylight. After all, the Uber Board was already in the process of removing him from the company.

What does the letter say?

Being published in a forthcoming book about Uber, the letter talks about three main learnings or areas of concern for Kalanick, all from both a personal and professional point of view.

1) Don’t let success get into your head

Kalanick talks about how he was always someone who struggled to thrive or survive. He knew how to be on the bottom corner of failure. However, he lacked experience in leading a successful and marvelous start-up like Uber which grew every single day. It was a challenge for him to handle the huge amount of success and at the same time know where to put the money into use.

2) Super-aggressive, not that great

Uber is known to usually never ask for forgiveness or for permission. As a small company, it was needed to enter the market, establish a new trend of cab-sharing and step into cities were even getting a small permit is difficult. However, with times and people, concepts and ideologies should also change. Aggressiveness came off bullying and arrogance once Uber became a large organization and was the highlight for the entire world.

3) Employee relationship, gone for a toss

The fact always remains, Uber is more often than not seen as a ride-hailing service and people judge Uber by the cab, quality, and service it provides. At the end of the day, it is the cab drivers that come into contact with the customers and if they aren’t happy or up to the mark, the company’s market reputation suffers. Kalanick accepted his mistakes of not understanding his employees better or knowing them but also further promised to talk more about it later.

It is still regretful that this letter never saw the light when it should have and we never got to the later part.

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