[Uber]–The Uber CEO, Travis Kalanick, was caught on a dashboard camera in a heated argument with one of the companys driver over falling fares and low pay.
In the video, published by Bloomberg on Tuesday, Kalanick is shown arguing with his driver over fares. The argument gets heated and ends with Kalanick telling the driver to stop blaming Uber for his problems.
According to Bloomberg the video was recorded by Uber Black driver Fawzi Kamel on February 5 (Uber Black is the company’s high-end service).
It shows Kalanick sitting in the backseat between two women. Music plays on the radio and Kalanick shimmies his shoulders and jokes around with the women.
As the ride ends and the women step out of the car, Kamel takes the opportunity to tell Kalanick that Uber’s lowered fares have been hard for drivers.
Kalanick explained that the price had to drop to remain in business due to intense competition.
We didnt go low-end because we wanted to. We went low-end because we had to because we would be out of business
” I lost $97,000 because of you. I am bankrupt because of you”, the driver lamented.
The driver had claimed Uber Black started out with $20 fare but it had since dropped to $2.75.
“Some people don’t like to take responsibility for their own shit. They blame everything in their life on somebody else,” the obviously pissed off Kalanick said as he got out of the car and slammed the door. “
The video comes on the heels of a long past few weeks for Uber, which have involved everything from the resignation of a top executive member to allegations of sexual harassment to internal leaks detailing a chaotic companywide culture of sexism and unprofessional business practices.
This relentless slew of leaks and revelations have called into question whether Uber can maintain its place at the top of the ride-hailing world, while still having a no-apologies attitude and Kalanick at the helm.
Two Uber investors wrote an open letter to the company’s board of directors last week criticizing the company for having “a culture plagued by disrespect, exclusionary cliques, lack of diversity, and tolerance for bullying and harassment of every form”.
They warned the “stakes are high” for Uber to change these patterns.
While Kalanick called the sexual harassment allegations “abhorrent” and promised to conduct an internal investigation into the matter, throwing a driver dispute into this Uber pile-on could be toxic for the company.
However, in an email sent to all Uber employees on Tuesday evening, Kalanick apologized for his behavior.
“To say that I am ashamed is an extreme understatement,” Kalanick wrote. “My job as your leader is to lead…and that starts with behaving in a way that makes us all proud. That is not what I did, and it cannot be explained away.”
“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,” Kalanick continued. “This is the first time I’ve been willing to admit that I need leadership help and I intend to get it.”