Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s Letter to Employees Leaks, Contains Rules for Sex With Co-Workers

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick's Letter to Employees Leaks, Contains Rules for Sex With Co-Workers

The company had arranged for celebration in Miami in 2013
Uber CEO had reportedly sent out an internal email titled ‘Miami letter’
The email listed conditions for having sex with fellow employees
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is back under the scanner for inappropriate behaviour in an email written to his employees that has leaked and made its way to the Web. This email was written as a do’s and don’ts list for Uber employees heading to Miami in 2013 to celebrate a big milestone of the company. At that time, Uber had launched its service in the 50th global city and was taking 400 of its employees to Miami to celebrate the feat. The letter is said to have internally been called the ‘Miami letter’ and it contains explicit language including conditions on having sex with co-employees. This letter is now reportedly being scrutinised by two law firms as the company is under investigation for corporate misbehaviour.

The email is written in a rather boisterous manner with profanity used generously and has quotes like, “You better read this or I’ll kick your ass.” The email goes on to warn people to behave in Miami, and not do inappropriate things like drugs, vomit, and more.

There’s also a condition mentioned for having sex with employees, and in Travis’ words, “Do not have sex with another employee UNLESS a) you have asked that person for that privilege and they have responded with an emphatic “YES! I will have sex with you” AND b) the two (or more) of you do not work in the same chain of command. Yes, that means that Travis will be celibate on this trip. #CEOLife #FML.”
This is a classic depiction of the existing startup culture, and the bro language that is usually used in conversations of executives and employees. However, Recode reports that this email has become relevant again after the company is under investigation about corporate misbehaviour at Uber.

The report states that law firms Perkins Coie and Covington & Burling are looking at whether the letter “helped created the party atmosphere that led to the sexism and sexual harassment, as well as general corporate mismanagement.”

You can read the entire ‘Miami letter’ published first by Recode below:

From: Travis Kalanick

Date: Friday, October 25, 2013


To: Uber Team

Hey guys, I wanted to get some important information out there. I’ve put together a Q&A that we can use when other folks ask what we’re doing here, and have some DOs and DON’Ts for our time here in Miami.

You better read this or I’ll kick your ass.


Q&A – If I’ve missed anything, or you just have a random question, please reply to all on this thread!

Q: What is Uber doing here?

A: Uber has recently rolled out to its 50th global city. We are celebrating this company milestone and others and have organized a local grassroots movement to help bring Uber to Miami. #MiamiNeedsUber

Q: What does the Chinese symbol 九 stand for?

A: 九 translates to the number 9. It is a symbol that has internal meaning at Uber but is something we do not discuss externally.

Q: Is this an Internet bubble boondoggle?

A: It’s a celebration of a major milestone for the company, as well as a chance for us to hold a company-wide retreat and organize our efforts globally. It’s the one time that everyone in the company can meet in person all the people we work with every day.


I have gotten a list of concerns from the legal department. I have translated these concerns into a clear set of common sense guidelines. I’ve also added a few items of my own.


1) No lives should begin or end at 九

2) We do not have a budget to bail anyone out of jail. Don’t be that guy. #CLM

3) Do not throw large kegs off of tall buildings. Please talk to Ryan McKillen and Amos Barreto for specific insights on this topic.

4) Do not have sex with another employee UNLESS a) you have asked that person for that privilege and they have responded with an emphatic “YES! I will have sex with you” AND b) the two (or more) of you do not work in the same chain of command. Yes, that means that Travis will be celibate on this trip. #CEOLife #FML

5) Drugs and narcotics will not be tolerated unless you have the appropriate medicinal licensing.

6) There will be a $200 puke charge for any public displays on the Shore Club premises. Shore Club will be required to send pictures as proof.

7) DO NOT TALK TO PRESS. Send all press inquiries to Andrew – [email protected] Additionally, stay vigilant about making sure people don’t infiltrate our event. If and when you find yourself talking to a non-Uber (look for the wristband), keep confidential stuff confidential… no rev figures, driver figures, trip figures… don’t talk about internal process, and don’t talk about initiatives that have not already launched.



1) Have a great fucking time. This is a celebration! We’ve all earned it.

2) Share good music. Digital DJs are encouraged to share their beats poolside.

3) Go out of your way to meet as many of your fellow uberettos as you can.

4) If you haven’t figured it out yet, Miami’s transportation sucks ass. #Slang as many Miamians, drivers, influencers as you can as passionately as you can and let them know why Uber will make this great city an even better place. Every slang matters. #MiamiNeedsUber…

5) If someone asks to meet the CEO and Founder of Uber, kindly introduce him to Max Crowley.

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Tags: Uber, Uber CEO, Travis Kalanick, Miami letter, Uber Investigation

Curiosity can predict employees ability to creatively solve problems

Image result for Curiosity can predict employees' ability to creatively solve problems

Employers who are looking to hire creative problem-solvers should consider candidates with strong curiosity traits, and personality tests may be one way to tease out those traits in prospective employees, new research from Oregon State University shows.

People who showed strong curiosity traits on personality tests performed better on creative tasks and those with a strong diversive curiosity trait, or curiosity associated with the interest in exploring unfamiliar topics and learning something new, were more likely to come up with creative solutions to a problem, the researchers found.

The findings contribute to a growing body of evidence suggesting that testing for curiosity traits may be useful for employers, especially those seeking to fill complex jobs, said Jay Hardy, an assistant professor in OSU’s College of Business and lead author of the study.

As workplaces evolve and jobs become increasingly dynamic and complex, having employees who can adapt to changing environments and learn new skills is becoming more and more valuable to organizations’ success, he said.

“But if you look at job descriptions today, employers often say they are looking for curious and creative employees, but they are not selecting candidates based on those traits,” said Hardy, whose research focuses on employee training and development. “This research suggests it may be useful for employers to measure curiosity, and, in particular, diversive curiosity, when hiring new employees.”

The findings were published recently in the journal Personality and Individual Differences. Co-authors are Alisha Ness of University of Oklahoma and Jensen Mecca of Shaker Consulting Group.

Past research has shown that curiosity is a strong predictor of a person’s ability to creatively solve problems in the workplace. But questions remain about how, why and when curiosity affects the creative process, Hardy said. The latest research helps to pinpoint the type of curiosity that best aids creative problem-solving.

Diversive curiosity is a trait well-suited to early stage problem-solving because it leads to gathering a large amount of information relevant to the problem. That information can be used to generate and evaluate new ideas in later stages of creative problem-solving. Diversive curiosity tends to be a more positive force.

On the other hand, people with strong specific curiosity traits, or the curiosity that reduces anxiety and fills gaps in understanding, tend to be more problem-focused. Specific curiosity tends to be a negative force.

For the study, researchers asked 122 undergraduate college students, to take personality tests that measured their diversive and specific curiosity traits.

They then asked the students to complete an experimental task involving the development of a marketing plan for a retailer. Researchers evaluated the students’ early-stage and late-stage creative problem-solving processes, including the number of ideas generated. The students’ ideas were also evaluated based on their quality and originality.

The findings indicated that the participants’ diversive curiosity scores related strongly to their performance scores. Those with stronger diversive curiosity traits spent more time and developed more ideas in the early stages of the task. Stronger specific curiosity traits did not significantly relate to the participants’ idea generation and did not affect their creative performance.

“Because it has a distinct effect, diversive curiosity can add something extra in a prospective employee,” Hardy said. “Specific curiosity does matter, but the diversive piece is useful in more abstract ways.”

Another important finding of the research, Hardy noted, is that participants’ behavior in the information-seeking stage of the task was key to explaining differences in creative outcome. For people who are not creative naturally, a lack of natural diversive curiosity may be overcome, in part, by simply spending more time asking questions and reviewing materials at the early stages of a task, he said.

“Creativity to a degree is a trainable skill,” he said. “It is a skill that is developed and can be improved. The more of it you do, the better you will get at it.”

[Source:- SD]

Mozilla Lays Off Employees Working on Firefox-Powered Connected Devices: Report

Mozilla Lays Off Employees Working on Firefox-Powered Connected Devices: Report


  • Mozilla dissolves team behind connected devices initiative
  • The company has reportedly laid off a team of 50
  • Mozilla ended development of its Firefox OS for smartphones in 2015

Mozilla, the non-profit company popular for its Firefox browser, has given up on its dream of expanding into connected devices. The company has confirmed that it is dissolving its connected devices initiative after failing to make an impact after all.

Separately, CNET reports that the company is eliminating the team working on Firefox-enabled connected devices initiative. It adds that this affects roughly 50 employees citing people familiar with the situation. The report claims that Ari Jaaksi, Senior Vice President, Connected Devices at Mozilla, is also leaving the company alongside Bertrand Neveux, Director, Connected Devices at Mozilla. Mozilla reportedly had about 1,000 employees at the end of 2016.

In a statement to CNET, Mozilla confirmed it’s dissolving the team tasked to work connected devices initiative. It said, “We have shifted our internal approach to the internet-of-things opportunity to step back from a focus on launching and scaling commercial products to one focused on research and advanced development, dissolving our connected devices initiative and incorporating our internet-of-things explorations into an increased focus on emerging technologies.”

Notably, this is not the first time Mozilla has failed trying to do something more than its browser success. In 2015, Mozilla killed its smartphone operating system citing it was not “able to offer the best user experience possible” in its Firefox OS on smartphones. Some smartphones with Firefox OS did make it to the market in 2013 and 2014 though were able to gain any positive response from the Indian market. Over time Mozilla collaborated with OEMs to launch several low-budget smartphones including Spice Fire One, and Intex Cloud FX in India.

Early last year, Mozilla revealed that it was ending development on Firefox OS for smartphones. The operating system created by Mozilla developer community as an open-source system failed to gain traction in mobile devices.

Tags: Mozilla, Firefox, Firefox OS, IoT, Internet of Things

As the Job Market Heats Up, Consider These Bonuses to Keep Employees Happy

Types of Bonuses to Consider

A bonus is additional compensation paid to an employee. As the job market heats up, the competition among employers to attract and retain good workers is growing. Bonuses may be a way for your company to gain a competitive edge in the job market. This is especially true for small businesses that may not offer the same menu of fringe benefits that large corporations do.

Common Types of Bonuses

Signing Bonuses

When you hear the term “signing bonus” you may think about a sports team. Increasingly, businesses are using the concept to attract the best and brightest. According to the Society for Humans Resource Management, only 31.6 percent of employers offered them in 2002. World at Work in 2011 found that it was up to 54 percent. Typically, signing bonuses aren’t paid in a lump sum but over the course of a year or more to ensure that the person hired works out.

Retention Bonuses

These are much less common than signing bonuses. They’re made to keep a key employee with the company during a critical project or at other desperate times. I’m presenting this because they exist. However, there’s been a lot of criticism about retention bonuses; decide for yourself.

Incentive/Performance Bonuses

As the name implies, these are paid as an incentive to employees to achieve a benchmark in performance. These are common for those in sales, but can be used for any type of employee who completes a project on time and within budget.

Year-end Bonuses

Year-end bonuses are the most common type of bonuses in the workplace. What’s going to be paid this year? It’s too early to tell, but expect that the range will vary by industry in general and by employer in particular. In past years, year-end bonuses may be small tokens of appreciation paid at holiday time (do you recall the Jelly-of-the Month in the movie “Christmas Vacation”?) or meaningful cash payments (e.g., equal to a month’s salary).

Some companies delay the year-end bonus until they’ve had an opportunity to close the books and see what they can afford. In a sense, these companies are paying a profit-sharing amount to employees who helped with their success.

Other Types of Bonuses

While the ones discussed earlier are the most common, companies can use bonuses for any good business purpose. Some examples:

  • Suggestion bonuses are for providing ways for the company to do things better, safer or cheaper.
  • Referral bonuses are for suggesting a new employee. The payment is made if the referral is hired.
  • Spot bonuses are out-of-the-blue payments for something special, such as a particularly good job by a worker. They function like a performance bonus, but they’re not announced in advance to serve as an incentive.
  • Task/mission bonuses are also like incentive or spot bonuses paid for a job well done, but typically they are awarded to a team rather than a single employee.

Financial and Tax Considerations

How much to pay depends on various factors. For example, when it comes to a signing bonus, the factors include what you can afford, the level and talent of the employee, and whether there is a scarcity of talent for the position you’re trying to fill. A rule of thumb for signing bonuses is 5 percent to 10 percent of base pay for professionals and middle managers.

From a tax perspective, it’s easy: bonuses of all types are taxable compensation. Withholding can be done in either of two ways:

  • Add the bonus to regular compensation and figure withholding in the usual way.
  • Withhold separately on the bonus at a flat rate of 25 percent. (For bonuses over $1 million, unlikely in a small business, the flat rate is 39.6 percent.)


It’s good business practice to review your policy on bonuses to make sure you’re staying competitive. Then determine the amount you can pay and who on your staff will receive them. Work with your CPA or other financial advisor to make sure you’re doing the right thing.

Bonus Photo via Shutterstock