My guest today is Patty McCord, former Chief Human Resources Officer at Netflix, author of the unabashedly bold book, “Powerful,” and a rocket ship of a disrupter.

Takeaways from this Episode:

  • It is easy to think that if we had more time, more money, more expertise, or more buy-in, our problems would dissolve, but what we may really need is more constraints. Constraints provide friction that force us to make decisions, allowing us to climb the learning curve.
  • If you want to empower people, get out of their way. Give people hard things to do and let them do it! Let them own and be responsible for results and deliverables.
  • Help your employees understand your business: how you make money, what each person does to help make that money, and how much they cost. Employees that understand how the machine works will better understand how their cog fits into the whole, leading to better input, insights, and strategic thinking.
  • Sometimes it is necessary for an employee to move on. These are not easy conversations, but they do not need to be the emotional equivalent of a firing squad. Companies change, the competitive environment changes, and employee’s lives change—we need to pull the shame out of acknowledging that an employee is no longer the best fit for the job. Allow them to jump to a new learning curve.

Although Patty describes herself as a serial entrepreneur, she started her career at very large companies and worked her way backward, with each company getting progressively smaller. Now a prized speaker and consultant, Patty works with companies that want the innovative spirit and agility of a start up, and she’s not afraid to ask the tough questions to get them there.

Questioning everything from why companies do performance reviews to why they don’t teach everyone to read the profit and loss statements, Patty prefers an honest non-nonsense approach that is oftentimes just as focused on what companies should NOT do as what they should do.

“We gotta stop this stuff… So when you talk about my ideas as hard-hitting, and provocative, and shocking, they’re really not. It’s just the truth. It’s just that nobody says it very well.”

I find Patty’s ideas and work so impressive and interesting. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, part of a start-up, or a cog in the wheel of a national corporation, I hope you find it interesting, too. Listen on iTunes or in the player above, and if you enjoy the show, please consider clicking here to leave us a review.

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