Travis Kalanick, Uber’s chief executive, apologized after a video surfaced of him arguing with one of the company’s drivers about decreasing pay rates.
Kalanick stated that he needs to “grow up” and seek help after the embarrassing footage from the dashcam showed him dismissing angrily the driver’s concerns.
A one star argument
The CEO was coming to the end of his Uber ride, along with the two women he was travelling with, when his driver Fawzi Kamel inquired from him why Uber has significantly cut the prices customers pay per travelled mile.
Kamel said to Kalanick that people are not trusting him anymore and that he lost $97,000 due to the company’s decisions, “I’m bankrupt because of you,” Kamel went on saying.
Kalanick belittled the driver’s concerns, calling them “bulls***”. He said to Kamel: “Some people don’t like to take responsibility for their own s***. They blame everything in their life on somebody else.”
The video shows the Uber boss leaving the car and slamming the door behind him. He was given a one-star rating by Kamel for the rude exchange
After the video surfaced, Kalanick said he was embarrassed for treating the driver with disrespect, and apologized. He issued a statement saying: “It’s clear this video is a reflection of me – and the criticism we’ve received is a stark reminder that I must fundamentally change as a leader and grow up. This is the first time I’ve been willing to admit that I need leadership help and I intend to get it.”
A battered reputation
Uber’s image has been battered by several scandals in recent months. The company is currently fighting an employee’s claims that she was sexually harassed. As well as unfavorable claims of ruthless management and a toxic work environment within the organization.
Controversy has also followed Kalanick after he agreed to become part of a business advisory group for President Donald Trump. The app’s customers were outraged and unleashed the #DeleteUber hashtag, which led him to step down afterwards.
To top it all off, Alphabet, Google’s parent company is suing Uber for allegedly stealing the technology it is using to create self-driving cars which Uber denies.