CEO Dara Khosrowshahi unveiled new company rules on Tuesday designed to clean up the startup's workplace culture.
Khosrowshahi said in a LinkedIn post he determined after a few months on the job that the "culture and approach that got Uber where it is today is not what will get us to the next level." Among the eight rules was "We do the right thing. Period."
The new rules are part of Khosrowshahi's attempt to rescue a brand hit hard by a slew of scandals in the past couple of months. Khosrowshahi was appointed in August to fill the post, which had been vacant since co-founder Travis Kalanick was forced out of the job two months earlier.
Among the new rules is "we celebrate differences … we encourage different opinions and approaches to be heard" and "we are customer obsessed. We work tirelessly to earn our customers' trust and business by solving their problems."
Khosrowshahi was hired to right a company rocked by a tumultuous year, one in which its CEO was forced to resign. More than 20 employees were fired after an investigation into sexual harassment allegations. Also, the company is defending itself against a trade-secret theft lawsuit from Waymo, a self-driving car business run by Alphabet, Google's parent company.
An internal investigation led by former US Attorney General Eric Holder looked into systemic discrimination, harassment and retaliation at the San Francisco company. After a monthslong investigation, Holder made 47 recommendations on how to clean up its workplace culture.
Uber's new rules are the result of Holder's recommendation that Uber "reformulate" its 14 cultural values. Up until then, when new hires joined the company, they were asked to subscribe to a unique set of "values." These included meritocracy, toe-stepping, principled confrontation and "always be hustlin'."
Core principles such as being obsessed with customers remained in the rules, while meritocracy, or the philosophy that power is vested in individuals based on their ability and talent, didn't carry over.
"Uber has always been a company that embraces change, and going forward we'll approach our culture in the same way," Khosrowshahi wrote. "We certainly don't expect these norms to change overnight, or every year, but we always want to take stock of who we are, who we want to be, and move accordingly."
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