A couple of years ago, Netflix published a summary of its management philosophy.This philosophy had already helped the company grow from a tiny DVD-by-mail company to a multi-billion-dollar disruptive behemoth. And Netflix has boomed since then.
Several aspects of the management philosophy were instantly controversial.
- No vacation policy (take as much as you want, as long as you’re doing a great job and covering your responsibilities).
- “Outstanding” employees only–doing an “adequate” job leads to your getting a “generous severance package,” so the company can hire an A-player in your place.
- “Freedom and responsibility” vs command-and-control: Good managers give their employees the right context in which to make decisions–and then the employees make the decisions.
- No “brilliant jerks” — Star performers who also happen to be hell to work with are sent packing.
And so on…
Netflix’s philosophy immediately triggered violent debates, including on this site. For example, we asked readers (and employees) whether we should eliminate our traditional vacation policy and fire everyone who was doing just an adequate job. We heard passionate responses on both sides.
Well, now Netflix has just released an updated culture and management philosophy, one that takes into account another two years of operating experience, as well as all the feedback the company got on its prior philosophy.
As with the original version, the new Netflix philosophy turns a lot of conventional wisdom on its head. But the approach and logic is extremely compelling. Having read the new deck, in fact, it is once again no surprise to us why Netflix is doing so well.
Netflix’s logic is so compelling, in fact, that we’re considering adopting the Netflix philosophy here at Business Insider. We’re already doing many of these things anyway. And now that Netflix has articulated them in such detail, we figure we might as well jump aboard for the ride.
We’ve included the presentation below. We look forward to hearing your thoughts.