Postmates CEO apologizes for ‘bad joke’ that insulted Seattle customer

lehmann33OK, here’s the startup lesson of the day. If you’re a CEO of a startup company or any company for that matter, don’t tell your customers to “fuck off,” or even joke about it.

That’s the situation that arose over the weekend after Erin Boudreau — a Seattle customer of the Postmates online delivery service — complained to customer service.

According to a response that Boudreau posted to Twitter, Postmates CEO Bastian Lehmann responded by telling customer service reps at the company to tell her to “fuck off.” In an apology posted on the Postmates blog, Lehmann said his private email was a “bad joke” that was “very poor in taste.”

Boudreau isn’t quite buying the joke response, as you can see in this Tweet.

Postmates, which often draws comparisons to the dot-com disaster known as Kozmo.com, arrived in Seattle in March.

Here’s the full apology from Lehmann:

Last night I sent a private e-mail to our Customer Service team in response to a customer complaint regarding her past orders and restaurant profile. My e-mail, which outlined how to resolve the customer issue, contained a bad joke which was very poor in taste. Subsequently, the bad joke was sent to the customer. What I said was a major lapse in judgement on my part. I deeply regret this.

I immediately reached out to the customer and offered my full and sincere apology. I would like to extend that same apology to all of our customers and Customer Service team. There is no excuse for this.

At Postmates we love and value our world-class Customer Service. We take great pride in our Customer Service team. However, with my comment I have not lived up to our own standards and also damaged my team’s reputation.

I cannot find the words to describe how much I value our customers and how deeply I care about them being happy. There is no excuse for this type of conduct.

I take full responsibility for my actions. I am sincerely sorry.

Bastian Lehmann

  • Not Buying it Either

    Bastian repeatedly makes snide and snarky comments on twitter, and his typical response to customers is “too bad, that’s how it is.” The best thing he could do for the company is keep his mouth shut.

  • Would have been nice to see the whole email chain to see what prompted him to making such a comment.

    • jaif31

      Appears they listed her restaurant w/o her permission (they don’t even offer takeout)…

  • Kevin McCarthy

    I’ve installed the postmates app, and I’ve loaded it several times when I’m in the mood for some munchies or something, but I have yet to order. My main problem is that it tries to get me to order from places that are really physically close to where I am.

    I’m lazy, but I’m not remarkably lazy. If I wanted something from a place < 1 mile away I could walk or drive there.
    I'm guessing this customer service attitude is much more pervasive than the CEO would like us to believe. It's a really bad leadership decision.

  • Guest

    “Bad joke”? It’s a pretty good joke that Bastian Lehmann (if that is his real name) is allowed to lead a company in the business of serving customers. #fuckoffbastian

  • Damian Susa

    I found that the Seattle team they installed in the first place is totally subpar. For that reason alone, setting aside the business model, will be there demise. They need more senior folks that have worked with real customers & big companies (ie non startups). Not impressed with the start in Seattle frankly. Turn over that leadership team locally and I’d expect better upside, especially the ability to handle these PR issues coming from corporate.

    • Soren Jensen

      Yep. Postmates leadership team they selected in Seattle is abysmal.

  • Freddy Marcel

    I rode for 8 months for postmates here in SF. After almost 20 years in the messenger/courier industry I can tell you postmates is a scam, an investment scheme (like everything else Bastian has been involved in) and utter heartache for riders. See my videos “The Truth About Postmates” on youtube.

    • mayagele

      its fuckin scheme and terrible lie. they say u will make 20 to 30 dollars but i can hardly make minimum wage riding in the snow. They are scam and waste of people time.

  • short this stock

    They’re fucked. Simple as that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ComicConBooBoo Comic Con Boo Boo

    you need to stop pamering people, they feel entitled. if she was a bitch than fuck you is appropiate