Episode 121.5 – Green Apple Slice


How to Fix Your Company’s Culture, According to Former Netflix Exec Patty McCord

The Green Apple Podcast does weekly “Green Apple Slices”, where John Garrett and Rachel Fisch discuss a recent business article related to the Green Apple Message. These shorter segments are released each Monday, so don’t miss an episode by subscribing on iTunes or an Android app.

This week, John and Rachel discuss a Recode article, “How to Fix Your Company’s Culture, According to Former Netflix Exec Patty McCord” by Eric Johnson.


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    Hello. It’s John Garrett coming to you another Monday with an episode of Green Apple Slices where I talk with the Accountants Group Leader for Sage in Canada, Rachel Fisch.

    Rachel: Hello, John. How are you doing?

    John: Doing great. That’s two weeks in a row that I nailed your title, right?

    Rachel: I know.

    John: And boom, everybody. I’m going to go treat myself to lunch. But yeah, but we’re going to have some fun. And yeah, so you just got back from Vancouver.

    Rachel: Yes.

    John: And yeah, it’s balmy February in Canada.

    Rachel: We’ll see. It’s just the beginning of February. So we’ll see what it turns out being. This winter has been really weird. It’s been like super freezing and then warm and melting and it’s just kind of all over the place.

    John: Right, right, exactly, exactly. But every Monday, we always get together and chat. And it’s much appreciated. I’m always so surprised when you pick up.

    Rachel: It’s my favorite part of Mondays.

    John: There you go. So this article was on reco.net. It was an article about a podcast interview by Patty McCord who was the former Netflix Executive Head of Culture. And it was just how to fix your company’s culture. I think it was really good and it talked about the Netflix culture deck that one of her co-workers just put out there on SlideShare. It’s 125-slides. So if you’ve got the time, you can take a look, but…

    Rachel: It’s a little bit of slide-overkill, a little bit, yeah.

    John: Right. But it was really fun here. Her reaction was — she was freaking out that, “Oh, my goodness! The slide deck is out there talking about our culture.” And what actually happened is now all of a sudden, the people applying were much better qualified because they got the culture. They understood what it was. And so then better candidates were coming to the table.

    Rachel: Yeah. A couple of things, first of all, we’re doing a podcast about an article about a podcast.

    John: About a podcast. I know. This is so meta.

    Rachel: So I think what we need to do is write an article about this podcast.

    John: Yes.

    Rachel: Just talking about an article.

    John: I like it.

    Rachel: That’s just some Monday morning silliness. So what I kind of have seen is that more companies are doing like an introductory video or something that kind of tells the employees what the company is about, what are these things that we believe in, what are our core values, those types of things. Maybe in some more traditional work places, you still send in your resume and then you get called and you do an over-the-phone or an in-person interview. And then you get the second grouping or whatever.

    John: Right.

    Rachel: There’s really kind of a lot more interaction, but also more education happening from the potential employer to the potential employee a little bit. Just talking about this is what all we’re about. If you’re about those things too, we can continue, which I think is great because that’s kind of prequalifying those people and as we’ve seen in this article that it has made a difference in the quality and the level of expectation that those candidates have getting in there. So that’s really cool.

    John: No, no, I think that’s an excellent idea and that’s really fantastic, absolutely. And it also works well as a reminder for the current employees and the current team to be like, “Hey, remember, this is what we’re all about here.” And also what was brought up in the interview was just how the leadership needs to actually act out and act like the way that they want people to be because that’s usually what people see.

    Rachel: What? No.

    John: Yeah, I know it’s crazy. It’s crazy.

    Rachel: You mean you could do as I say not as I do? What?

    John: Right. Because there’s so many firms that you walk into and on the wall, it says one thing and then you see it clearly in action not the case. And the people totally sniff that out from a hundred yards away.

    Rachel: Oh, for sure.

    John: So it’s something that definitely people need to be on board with and so I thought that was a really good part of it. And then also she also brought up just how you don’t have to get all these crazy, expensive perks like the googles and the dot-coms and the places like that. It’s just it comes back to all the time is just the genuine interest in the people around you.

    Rachel: And that’s free. That doesn’t cost anybody to actually —

    John: Totally free.

    Rachel: — to actually be engaging with the people around you, yeah, for sure.

    John: And every accountant just got like way excited when they heard the word “free.” They’re like, “What? Where? Huh?”

    Rachel: I want that. What I also love — and it’s Patty McCord, of course, the interview was with that she put it out there. Like it’s public. Anybody can go and look at this 125-slide deck and take a look at kind of the inner workings or what Netflix believe for their company culture. And the article itself starts out about some of the challenges that we’ve seen in 2017. And to me, that just drives home the importance of acknowledging that this is something really crucial.

    John: Yeah, absolutely. Really great interview and if you have the time you can check out the link at greenapplepodcast.com and it’ll take you there. And yeah, follow us on Twitter. Don’t forget to hit subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss an episode and that works. So have a good rest of the week, Rachel. Great talking to you again.

    Rachel: Thanks. You too, John. Talk to you later.

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