The man featured in the 2017 book "The Upstarts" - Travis Kalanick - has decided to become, well, more normal. And, isn't that exactly what we bore witness to last night as the president - Donald Trump - addressed Congress.
The Atlantic reports that Kalanick sent a memo to Uber employees. He stated that he plans to become a different kind of leader.
The negative developments of the past few weeks seemed to have triggered that moment of clarity in which upstart Kalanick recognized his persona and mode of decision-making weren't working.
The most seminal of those events was the blog post from former Uber engineer Susan Fowler. She contended she was a victim of sexual harassment at the company. When she made that known to human resources the problem wasn't resolved. In fact, there might have been retaliation against her.
But the tipping point could have been Kalanick's altercation with Uber driver Fawzi Kamel. The latter put it on video.
What kind of leader could Kalanick evolve into?
Well, we shouldn't anticipate too much.
Probably Kalanick will learn to pay more attention to signals both in the organization and externally. In the past, he seemed to attempt to bulldoze through realities. He likely will get a hang of controlling his temper. And he could probably hire more consultants for addressing issues such as gender equality.
These modifications will be oriented to retrofitting Uber to face a changing marketplace.
Lyft, for example, has become a formidable competitor.
And consumers factor in a company's political stances. During the immigration travel ban, many taxi companies shut down. Uber didn't. That set up the #deleteUber movement.
It's naïve to anticipate Kaanick will mutate into Mr. Nice Guy. After returning to Apple post-firing, Steve Jobs only seemed to upgrade and improve his Machiavellian leadership style. That was effective for him and for the future of Apple.
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