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This article was published on June 23, 2017

What culture problem? 1,100 Uber employees are clamoring for Travis Kalanick’s return

What culture problem? 1,100 Uber employees are clamoring for Travis Kalanick’s return Image by: TechCrunch
Bryan Clark
Story by

Bryan Clark

Former Managing Editor, TNW

Bryan is a freelance journalist. Bryan is a freelance journalist.

More than a thousand current Uber employees have signed a letter asking for Travis Kalanick to return. After stepping down earlier this week, employees went to bat for their former CEO. 1,100 employees “signed” a document by logging into a Google Doc using their Uber credentials.

Below is the full text of that document:

Board of Directors —

I’m writing to you today ahead of your scheduled meeting to share the thoughts of over 1,100 full-time Uber employees (and counting) who vehemently disagree with Travis’ resignation as CEO and the associated pressure placed on him to do so by investors and board members alike.

In less than 12 hours, these employees have expressed their belief that Travis should return to Uber in an operational role. This magnitude of a response was unexpected and should not be ignored. What started as simple note to my closest co-workers turned into a petition spanning hundreds of offices and teams, and has yet to be seen by a majority of employees.

As the folks who’ve actually worked alongside Travis for years to help create Uber from nothing, we are extremely disappointed by the short-sightedness and pure self-interest demonstrated by those who are supposed to protect the long-term interests of our company.

Yes, Travis is flawed, as we all are. But his passion, vision, and dedication to Uber are simply unmatched. We would not be here today without him, and believe he can evolve into the leader we need. He is critical to our future success.

We await your response and look forward to Travis’ return in an operational role.

Kalanick, Uber’s former CEO, left the company earlier this week after mounting pressure from board members. Their concerns were numerous, but stemmed around a reportedly toxic corporate climate, mounting legal trouble, and a workforce described by many current and former employees as frat boys.

For a company with culture problems, 1,100 people clamoring for the return of their beleaguered CEO, might be the greatest indication such a problem exists. Opposing the decision to step down is to ignore the company’s issues, and deflect fault from its CEO.

It also flies in the face of advice provided by a third-party auditor, a company which provided several recommendations to right the company — one of which was to remove Kalanick.

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