Brilliant. It’s no secret I disliked Groupon from the start. I disliked the approach Andrew Mason took to grow the company through what I felt was a horrible business model. That said – Major cudos on his final choice and this innovating and honest departure.
“After four and a half intense and wonderful years as CEO of Groupon, I’ve decided that I’d like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding — I was fired today. If you’re wondering why… you haven’t been paying attention. From controversial metrics in our S1 to our material weakness to two quarters of missing our own expectations and a stock price that’s hovering around one quarter of our listing price, the events of the last year and a half speak for themselves. As CEO, I am accountable.”….
That was not easy, even for someone who has roughly a few hundred million in the bank. It’s seldom about money in our game, it’s about getting the innovation out. Playing your hand out and shaking hands at the table is a mark of true leadership. He pushed innovation in more than just technology, Groupon was a test of innovation on multiple fronts. Win or Lose the company took on a concept full force and worked every angle in doing so.
“Beyond the issues with the strategy and business model at Groupon, there were also core issues with the development of the culture. Innovation was being forced to slow down to allow the management hierarchy to catch up, creating a severe culture clash. The size and complexity of Groupon grew so quickly it out-paced the rate of maturity of the organizational culture – much like a gangly, pimply teenager that grows to 6-feet tall.” – Kathy Gersch is an Executive Vice President at Kotter International,
What is the future of Groupon? It’s up to the people left behind to manage. Let’s hope they can let go as well. Let go of what was not working. Let go of what was wrong or pushing the company to crisis. Letting go as I write is NOT an abstract statement. It is not religious and it is not just about individuals. It is a power that leaders need to activate. This is a good example of letting go. Let’s not forget it’s lesson! Now, in the words that closed Mr. Masons message to all: