Andrew Mason, Now Former CEO of Groupon, Had a Fantastic Resignation Letter

Feb 28 2013

I dislike Groupon.  I dislike the business model. I dislike their customer service. But I loved Andrew Mason’s letter to his employees today after he found out that he had been fired.  He does a rare think and takes accountability for the results all the while having a sense of humor about it.  He finishes with positivity and pride.  Take a look and see if you agree

People of Groupon,

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.

You are doing amazing things at Groupon, and you deserve the outside world to give you a second chance. I’m getting in the way of that. A fresh CEO earns you that chance. The board is aligned behind the strategy we’ve shared over the last few months, and I’ve never seen you working together more effectively as a global company – it’s time to give Groupon a relief valve from the public noise.

For those who are concerned about me, please don’t be – I love Groupon, and I’m terribly proud of what we’ve created. I’m OK with having failed at this part of the journey. If Groupon was Battletoads, it would be like I made it all the way to the Terra Tubes without dying on my first ever play through. I am so lucky to have had the opportunity to take the company this far with all of you. I’ll now take some time to decompress (FYI I’m looking for a good fat camp to lose my Groupon 40, if anyone has a suggestion), and then maybe I’ll figure out how to channel this experience into something productive.

If there’s one piece of wisdom that this simple pilgrim would like to impart upon you: have the courage to start with the customer. My biggest regrets are the moments that I let a lack of data override my intuition on what’s best for our customers. This leadership change gives you some breathing room to break bad habits and deliver sustainable customer happiness – don’t waste the opportunity!

I will miss you terribly.

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Outsmarting the Dumb, Outworking the Smart

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  1. Aaron

    Very classy. Good for him to have the courage to take responsibility. Politicians please observe and learn…

  2. don

    Great post, this really should serve as a wakeup call to all small explosive growth companies, going public is no the end all be all.

  3. Ms Domainer


    What grace!

    One of the best exit letters I have ever read.

    He seems to recognize that we all fail at something and that failures are opportunities for future successes

    This young man has a bright future.


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