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Episode 36- Patty McCord on How Netflix Built A Culture of Freedom and Responsibility

April 19, 2018 • Book Club
Patty McCord, Netflix

As the chief talent officer of Netflix, Patty McCord helped create the company’s famous “culture deck”—a 124-page document that went viral and has been shared over 20 million times. Sheryl Sandberg called it “the most important document to ever come out of the Valley.” In her new book, Powerful: Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility, Patty teaches how to build high-performance cultures. Great teams are not created with incentives, procedures, and perks, she says. The best thing leaders can do is get rid of the cumbersome systems for managing people. On this episode, we talk about the biggest mistakes HR leaders make, the truth about what motivates employees, and how to practice radical honesty in the workplace.

Follow Patty: Twitter | Website

Show Notes

  • The big idea behind Patty’s book Powerful: Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility (1:45)
  • The defining moment at Netflix that changed the way Patty viewed traditional HR (2:41)
  • How leadership changes when you strip away processes and structure (6:45)
  • The difference between a strategy and a plan (7:44)
  • The story behind how Netflix’s culture deck went viral (9:06)
  • How the Netflix culture deck changed the way Netflix hires talent (10:39)
  • Why turnover isn’t a problem and the decision to make Netflix a company that was great to be from (12:52)
  • Why Patty hates the terms “empowerment” and “engagement” (14:21)
  • The problem with anonymous employee feedback surveys (16:30)
  • What organizations get wrong when it comes to motivating employees (18:41)
  • Re-thinking annual performance reviews (20:49)
  • Why meetings are an effective forum for providing feedback (23:11)
  • Incorporating 360 feedback sessions and the start-stop-continue exercise (24:25)
  • Patty’s advice on how to approach hiring talent (28:21)
  • The one question HR leaders should always ask (32:36)
  • What keeps companies from adapting and evolving (36:20)
  • Build a sports team, not a family (48:18) 

Resources / People Mentioned

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