Subscribing to Your Company Culture

Aug 05, 2014

Netflix’s auto play feature has me hooked into their brand. The constant “it’s only one more episode” approach has sucked me into the series television vortex more times than I even care to mention.

This isn’t the only time Netflix has successfully drawn people into their company. In fact, their HR strategy has given them the opportunity to recruit and retain incredible talent within their workforce.

Netflix has created a company culture which has made them famous for giving their employees unlimited vacation time. Yep, unlimited. Oh, they also pay their employees the best in their competitive market, assessing this number yearly. The company prides itself on hiring no “brilliant jerks” and only keeping people “you’d fight for if they wanted to leave.”

CEO Reed Hasting published a slide deck outlining the company’s culture and approach to hiring talent. Being seen virally over 9 million times, the deck has become an internet sensation, even being called “one of the most important documents that has ever come out of Silicon Valley.” Just take a look for yourself:

http://www.slideshare.net/reed2001/culture-1798664

It’s not flashy. There’s no animations. It’s just a simple, well executed deck which explains Netflix’s core beliefs and culture.

Tuning in to your company’s values

While Netflix’s specific company culture and values may not match your own, you can tune into Netflix for more than just Breaking Bad, Mad Men, or Orange is the New Black. Here’s a list of three quick takeaways you can use from Hasting’s deck when presenting your company’s values:

  1. You’re allowed to articulate who your company is, not just what you’re trying to do. Sure, you can define what your company is trying out to do. In creating your company culture, take a good look at who your company is. Personify it. If your company was going to be a real human with personality traits, what would they possess?
  2. Good people are attracted to good culture. Netflix created a company culture that would specifically attract the type of worker they were looking for. You should do the same. Create an environment that makes your employees want to come in.
  3. You’re a team, not a family. Your company isn’t a family, it’s a business. Hire, cut, fire, and promote to make sure you have only the best people filling your positions. People who negatively impact your business or culture have no place taking up a valuable seat.

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