Steph Korey, the CEO of the online luggage startup Away, is giving up that title after she came under fire following a recent article that was published in The Verge surrounding that company's lousy workplace culture. She will now segue to a role where she'll be the executive chairman of the company. Whether or not that sounds like a lateral move is up to you.
The new CEO will be Stuart Haselden, whose previous position had him as the COO of Lululemon Athletica. Away's cofounder, Jen Rubio, will remain in her position as the company's president and chief brand officer. Both of those announcements probably don't mean jack to you unless you work there, but it's helpful background info that lets you know who was impacted by fallout over The Verge's article.
Forbes reports that the travel/lifestyle brand best known for their luggage had revenue that was expected to reach $150 million in 2018. Based upon a valuation that the company was given in May 2019, Korey (as well as Rubio's) stake in Away was estimated at $130 million.
However, as mentioned multiple times already, a damning Verge article described an obnoxious workplace culture where executives humiliated employees over Slack chats. The report, which described the aforementioned workplace environment as a "culture of intimidation and constant surveillance," also detailed how workers were expected to skip planned vacations, work hours that extended over holidays and into the evening/night, and also work without paid time off. Additionally, employees weren't allowed to email one another, and management requested that direct messages between employees be kept at a minimum.
Korey previously issued an apology in which she said she was "appalled" to read her own messages. In that same Twitter post she also said that she was "sincerely sorry for what I said and how I said it. It was wrong, plain and simple."
According to a comment made to the Wall Street Journal, Away says they've been searching for a new CEO since spring which, of course, would imply that The Verge report was not the reason behind this shake-up.