How Uber's culture doomed Kalanick
The Wall Street Journal this morning calls Uber CEO Travis Kalanick's "abrupt surrender ... a stunning fall for one of the most celebrated careers in Silicon Valley." Kalanick keeps his board seat, retains control of a majority of Uber's voting shares, and had the pleasure of seeing a critic, venture capitalist Bill Gurley, leave the board.
- But this was a very personal rejection of a corporate culture that was long viewed as aggressive and unrestrained, then harshly scrutinized amid complaints of sexual harassment and discrimination.
- I just finished the well-timed new book by Fortune's Adam Lashinsky, "Wild Ride: Inside Uber's Quest for World Domination."
- My big takeaway: The fiasco at Uber is a product of the same phenomenon we're seeing in the Trump West Wing: Corporate cultures, whether healthy or sick, flow from the top — and are set in the organization's earliest days.