Earlier this year, Groupon sacked its founding CEO Andrew Mason following a uniquely disastrous first year as a public company.
After a successful IPO that valued Groupon at almost $13 billion, the company was slammed for shady accounting practices, questionable use of investment funds, and a string of losses. The day before Mason's firing, the company reported a net loss of $81 million for the latest quarter — and during his tenure, the stock dipped an impressive 77 percent.
So what does a 32-year-old fallen business star worth more than $200 million do after a public disgrace? Apparently, he records a soft-rock motivational album that's chock-full of business advice.
Hardly Workin' is seven songs filled with the "most important learnings from my years at the helm of one of the fastest growing businesses in history," Mason says on his website. He hopes management will put it to use:
Try ending your next all-hands meeting with "It's Up to Us," for example. Or, having trouble communicating with a low-per/hi-po employee? A "Thinkin' of You" note attached to a flash drive preloaded with "My Door is Always Open" might be the catalyst you need for that transformational breakthrough. [Andrew Mason]
The album is exactly as good as it sounds.
Here's a breakdown of advice from each song:
1. Look No Further
"If you're seeking business wisdom you don't need no MBA, look no further than the beauty that surrounds us every day."
"I see you looking at my bookshelf, eyeing Catcher in the Rye. Jack Welch didn't need no Tipping Point, and friend neither do I. I was climbing Machu Picchu, as I beheld a splendid view an idea came for 100 million of shareholder value."
2. The Way to Work
"As I ride along thinking about nothing, a thought appears in my mind — the solution to an HR issue that's been vexing me for too much time."
3. My Door is Always Open
"Why do we keep our thoughts bottled inside of our heads? Worried that they might do some harm, instead we let problems fester.
"My door is always open. In a culture of transparency, it's not just a right, it's a responsibility."
4. Risin' Above the Pack
"It's day one at employee orientation, you don't know how you're gonna survive, you look to your left and you look to your right, and you're wondering how you got in the room. Don't you know they're feeling the same way? Time to arbitrage their insecurity."
"Make sure the terms of success are clearly defined, know what's expected and exceed it, always do what you say you're gonna do, don't bring people problems, bring them solutions."
"When Steve Jobs invented the first mouse it had a single button point and click. Enough going on with learning how to drive just to worry about that shifty stick."
"Give me a kiss. Keep it simple stupid."
6. Stretch (feat. Bishop Lamont)
"You gotta stay focused, retain that hunger or you'll never ever ever be the next Charlie Munger."
7. It's up to Us
"This is our moment to disrupt an industry. One day we'll tell our grandkids how we made history."
"We've got the idea, we've got vision, we've got a team, we've got the customer critical mass. Yeah, market positioning. But what we knew, the funny thing is it's in our hands, it's all around us. Execution. Baby, it's up to us."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Fall movie guide: All the films you should see in September
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Scottish independence is another financial crisis waiting to happen
- 11 scientific studies that will restore your faith in humanity
- 7 things the world's happiest people do every day
- 10 things you need to know today: September 1, 2014
- The keys to succeeding with a job recruiter
- Why the West should let Russia have eastern Ukraine
- These real-life Rosie the Riveters changed the face of labor
- The 10 best networking tips for people who hate networking
Subscribe to the Week