To say Uber has had a difficult few months is putting the situation lightly. Still looking to hire a Chief Financial Officer (since 2015), and with mounting losses on its balance sheet, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi is looking to turn the ship around. One way Khosrowshahi hopes to do this is by changing the culture and public image of the company. Almost a year after Susan Fowler’s essay detailing the sexism at the company, Uber looks to be in the beginning stages of enacting some of the recommendations made to them by former US Attorney General Eric Holder and his partner Tammy Albarran, which include ” that the ride-hail company promote its current global head of diversity, Bernard Coleman, by elevating him to a new, more senior role of chief diversity officer. The Holder report also recommended that Coleman report directly to the company CEO and COO.”
To start, Uber has hired former Marsh employee Bo Young Lee “to be its first-ever chief diversity and inclusion officer.” Lee will not be reporting directly to the CEO and COO however but instead will report to “Uber’s chief human resources officer, Liane Hornsey, for the time being.” While not what the Holder report suggests, the fact that Uber now has a diversity officer is a much needed step in a positive direction. In addition to the hiring, Uber has in the recent past donated $1.2 million to Girls Who Code in an effort to earn goodwill from the public and (hopefully) to support women in tech.
Khosrowshahi’s Uber task is not complete however and he will need to do a bit more to try and fully change both the culture and financial projections. Still the goal of taking the company public in 2019, the ship seems to be stabilizing for the time being.