“We connect people with stories. Lots of people, and lots of stories. Our hundred million global members are a good start, but someday, we hope to entertain everyone. Entertainment, like friendship, is a core human need. No matter how big or small, dramatic or satiric, entertainment stimulates us, changes the way we feel, and gives us common ground.” Netflix Company Culture Extract
“Our version of the great workplace is not comprised of sushi lunches, great gyms, big offices, or frequent parties. Our version of the great workplace is a dream team in pursuit of ambitious common goals, for which we spend heavily.” ~Reed Hastings
Like attracts like but not in Silicon Valley. Here you need to stick to your culture. If you really want to be in the league of Level-5 companies from Good to Great, you need to establish a start with an epic culture. Even though Netflix resides right next to Google and Facebook but Netflix managed to keep the company culture intact right from the start.
So why is company culture so important and why Netflix received 16 million views on their company culture SlideShare presentation? There must be something different about Netflix that is keeping them above all its competition. In this blog, we would like to highlight few aspects that are working out in Netflix Company culture.
Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings is a firm believer in doing one thing well. Right from the low management to the higher management Reed has established a culture of focusing on core job. The tone of the culture is to grow and let people grow.
Stress the importance of open communication
Rather than chasing their employees for doing something wrong, Netflix appreciates them for being open. Most of the companies don’t allow this freedom to be realistic and disregard being too clean but Netflix is different. Here the culture is to say what you think is the greater good for the company in a way that people don’t mind.
Value Creativity above all
Netflix hires “Outstanding” employees only. There is no room for adequate at Reed Hasting’s video streaming company. “Those hires often lead to generous severance packages,” says the CEO of Netflix. McCord provides evidence that creativity is the most important asset in an employee. “In procedural work, the best is 2x better than the average. In creative/inventive work, the best is 10x [more creative],” she writes in the deck.
Respect all the employees
This might seem to be cliché to others, but at Netflix, Respect is treated as a religion. You can follow whatever you like but at the end of the day, you need to respect the person in front of you. You cannot disregard employee at any level. You need to listen to his/her idea and respect their view.
Pay top of the market
If you want the best talent, you must pay the best. It’s that simple. You should never regret being generous with valuable talent. It will make your employees work harder, feel more valued, and, ultimately, be more committed to your company’s bottom line. Money is one of the ways to show how much you value your team. This is not a time to be greedy. Remember this: “One outstanding employee gets more done and costs less than two adequate employees.” Netflix endeavors to have only outstanding employees.
Don’t just Preach, Act upon the company values
Unlike most of the companies, Netflix managers believe in old age wisdom of showing rather than preaching. All the managers are cautious about ‘walking their talk’ First show the employees what you expect from them, this will automatically transform the company culture from the upper management to every other level of management.
Give employees freedom
“If you’re careful to hire people who will put the company’s interests first, who understand and support the desire for a high-performance workplace, 97% of your employees will do the right thing.”
This is the core motto of the company. Most of the employees have the freedom to pitch their ideas and if the idea is implemented, they get awarded. Even the problems are solved with a whiteboard. The problem is listed and anyone can suggest its solution. This strategy is further adopted by Google and doing great wonders for them.
Netflix’s new culture document ends with the following lines from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry:
If you want to build a ship,
don’t drum up the people
to gather wood, divide the
work, and give orders.
Instead, teach them to yearn
for the vast and endless sea.
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