By Jon Evans.
How the mighty are fallen. Travis Kalanick is out, and Uber has become something of a headless horseman, with no current CEO, COO, CFO, CMO, VP of Engineering, or general counsel. Its alleged valuation has fallen by $18 billion and counting. How did this happen? Or maybe a better question is: how could this not have happened?
It really wasn’t so long ago, believe it or not, that Uber was everybody’s darling except for regulators and taxi cartels — and, presumably, employees who were reluctant to risk the consequences of speaking up against its toxic culture. Which, as I understand it, was by no means uniformly distributed across the company, but which clearly started at the top. Bit by bit, that culture began to curdle and metastasize, from invisibly to visibly poisonous.
Uber had two problems: 1) it would do anything to succeed, without regard for either the law1 or basic ethics; 2) per Susan Fowler’s now famous blog post, it fomented and perpetuated a deeply pernicious, jawdroppingly sexist internal culture. It may seem like 2) is independent of 1). After all, one can at least envision a hyperaggressive company that does not demean and discriminate against women, right?
Read more at TechCrunch.