Lu Qi talks with Hastings, founder of Netflix: Genius should let go at the right time

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Welcome to the wechat subscription number of “chuangshiji”: sinachungshiji
By Hastings, Lu Qi and Zhang Yijia
Ma Yalan and Zhang Heng
From the traditional DVD leasing company to the world’s leading streaming media giant, from the loss of US $60 million in the Internet bubble to its current market capitalization of over US $200 billion, the growth of Netflix’s trend is clearly not just an “epidemic beneficiary”.
Among entrepreneurs, Netflix has always been a unique role model. In Silicon Valley, it, together with Facebook, Amazon and Google, is known as the “four swordsmen of American stock market”. “Netflix Culture Manual” is called “the most important document in Silicon Valley” by Facebook CFO Sherly Sandberg, and has been downloaded more than 15 million times.
It can be said that Netflix has not only brought amazing works, but also its unique management concept and corporate culture.
On January 6, in the “Jia Zi Live Room”, reed Hastings, founder and CEO of Netflix, met Chinese readers for the first time with his new book “don’t stick to one style”. He held a dialogue with Dr. Lu Qi, founder of Qiji Chuangtan and former global executive vice president of Microsoft, on enterprise management and cultural innovation of technology companies. At the same time, Zhang Yijia, founder and CEO of Jiazi guangnian, was specially invited to participate in the dialogue.
The following is a live record of Lu Qi’s dialogue with Hastings:
Zhang Yijia: Hello, everyone. I’m Zhang Yijia, founder and CEO of Jiazi guangnian. Welcome to the studio.
Just in the past year 2020, many unexpected things have happened. An epidemic has changed a lot of business ecology. The industry can be described as uneven drought and flood, and double hot and cold. Compared with offline, the advantage of online is greatly enlarged. For example, the film industry has stopped shooting, theme parks have been closed, and many films have been delayed. However, the stock price of Netflix, which has transformed into a streaming media platform for a long time, has soared to an all-time high.
When it comes to Netflix, we can’t help mentioning a lot of masterpieces made by Netflix, such as the recently popular “abandoning soldiers in the rear wing” and the previous “love, death, robot” that swipe the screen. Even many times, the three words “Netflix” become the guarantee of the content. Is Netflix the success of Netflix drama, or Netflix drama the success of Netflix? This answer is inseparable from the company behind the helmsman – Netflix founder and CEO, reed Hastings.
Reid Hastings ranks fourth in Fortune magazine’s 2020 business figures just released, and together with Elon Musk, he won the second time on the list.
Why can Netflix grow strongly? Why can Netflix innovate constantly? This is because Hastings established a set of anti common sense, anti intuitive management rules.
In Netflix, you don’t have to please your boss. You can say what you want, and you don’t have to worry about people wearing shoes for you. In Netflix, there is no vacation system. If you like to take a vacation, you can “fly to the tropical island to swim” at any time. Is it envious? Not only that, Netflix also provides employees with the highest salary in the industry, so that your ideal and purse are full at the same time.
You may ask, how dare Netflix do this? If employees are given too much freedom, will they let themselves go and make the company disappear?
In this regard, at the end of 2020, Hastings published a book, “don’t stick to one pattern”, which answers the questions from the outside world and says from the bottom of his heart: if you give employees full freedom, they will take more responsibility.
For many managers, they are very afraid of chaos, so they create a lot of rules and regulations to avoid chaos. However, Netflix’s practice is very informal. They like to “manage at the border of chaos”. For this point, I have been very curious, and I am looking forward to the opportunity to get a direct answer from the boss of Netflix.
Today, we are very honored to have Mr. Hastings here. This is his first meeting with Chinese readers! Hastings will talk about Netflix culture and his book no rule’s rules.
Moreover, as the publisher of the Chinese version of “not stick to one style”, CITIC publishing group specially invited Dr. Lu Qi, the founder of Qiji creative circle, as a guest. In 2008, Dr. Lu Qi joined Microsoft as the global executive vice president. In 2007, Mr. Hastings began to serve as the director of Microsoft. They have forged a deep friendship. Let’s not say much. Let’s welcome two guests.
Lu Qi: Hello everyone. My name is Lu Qi, the founder of Qiji creation. Today, I’m very glad to have the opportunity to have a dialogue with my friend reed Hastings. He is really an outstanding entrepreneur and innovator. You can see his remarkable achievements in Netflix. Today, I have the opportunity to interview him, mainly to discuss and chat about Netflix’s new book, no rule’s rules, which is translated into “not stick to one style” in Chinese. The book describes how Netflix builds a very new and efficient innovation culture, so that employees can give full play to their creativity to a great extent. I hope today’s dialogue with reed can help Chinese readers better understand this book. Thank you.
Hastings: it’s a great honor to be here today to chat with Lu Qi and the Chinese readers. I am very glad that my book “not stick to one style” has a large number of Chinese readers, which is of great significance, because there are a lot of publicity activities in China now.

It‘s an honor to be here today, and to spend time with you. I’m so thrilled that our book NO RULE‘S RULES has a Chinese readership, which make sense because there’s so much entrepreneurial activity going on in China today.
Luchi: reed, nice to meet you. I’m very honored to have the opportunity to interview some of your Chinese readers on this book. First, in Netflix culture, you mentioned three key factors: talent density, honest communication, and less control. When it comes to talent density, how do you realize its key role in the construction of new culture?
Reed, so great to see you. It‘s my distinct honor to be able to have the chance to interview you for several questions with regard to that book for the Chinese audiences and readers. First question, Reed. In that fifth culture, three key aspects: talent density,increasing level of candor, and reduced corporate controls. In terms of talent density, how did you realize early on is critical importance in building foundation of that new culture.
Hastings: Well, I think the company was small at first, maybe only five to ten people. You did create a talent density. But you don’t have a process, you only have some great employees. With the continuous expansion of enterprises, things will become more challenging. Some enterprises may have hundreds, thousands or tens of thousands of employees. When you realize “it’s time to grow up,” things get messy and we start to need processes.
In fact, that’s what I did in the first company. Whenever I see a problem, we have a procedure to prevent it from happening again. So I see it as a recovery software, and then a basic management model is formed.
It turns out to reduce mistakes, but it also limits creativity. If you are a driver, you must obey the rules. But creative work doesn’t always follow established rules. They don’t like to go step by step, but work in a critical state of chaos. It’s about maximizing creativity and managing on the edge of chaos rather than falling into chaos.
Well,I think when you start very small and you just got five or ten people, you really yield talent density. You have no process, you just have some amazing people.
And then as you grow, things can get more challenging, and for some people, that‘s at a hundred employees, for some that’s at a thousand, for some it‘s at ten thousand.
What you heard is “Time to grow up”, things are chaotic, we need to put process in place.
And in fact I did that at my first company. I saw every time there was an error, we put a process in place to prevent it ever happening again. So I viewed it like a software regression suite, and then, that was a basic model of management.

And it turns out that it dose work at eliminating errors, but it also reduces creativity. Because the people who drive are the ones who follow the rules. And the people who do the creative work, you know, they don‘t always follow every rule. They’re not attracted by, like, process culture. They are attracted by working on the edge of chaos, and so the book NO RULE‘S RULES is about how to get the most creativity, by managing on the edge of chaos but not falling into chaos.
Lu Qi: when you talk about managing the critical state of chaos and releasing creativity, can you talk about it in detail. Before we go deep into the core of this issue, many Chinese readers and audiences are very interested in this issue, especially for start-ups. When they are still in their infancy, it has always been a difficult problem to employ top talents. What advice, experience and lessons do you have for start-ups who want to hire the best engineers and product managers?
So crystalize, when hearing you say managing the edge of chaos and unleashing the creativity. Before we get into the core of that, many of the Chinese readership and the audiences are interesting in one question though, particularly for start-ups when you are small, when you are early,hiring top notch talents has always been a struggled, a difficulty we all face. Do you have any tips, any lessons, advice for early stage company try to hire best engineer best product managers in all that?
Hastings: everyone is looking forward to making achievements in this world. He hopes his work is meaningful. So if we can figure out what kind of impact this entrepreneurship will bring to the world, I think it is enough to form the most powerful driving force for us to complete the heroic feat. The essence of entrepreneurship is to bring influence to the world through change.
People wanna make a difference in the world, they want their work to matter. So if you focus your pitch on why the work of the start-up is going to make an impact, I think that‘s the most compelling thing that gets people to do heroic things. It’s to change something to make an impact.
Lu Qi: well said, I really like the concept of managing in a chaotic border.
Yeah, so well said. And I‘m going back to sort of the core, managing the edge of chaos, I really like the framing.
Zhang Yijia: I also agree that this term is very good. It is a good way to manage in the chaotic boundary. But how to grasp this degree can not only allow employees to enjoy freedom and play innovation, but also prevent enterprises from falling into the abyss. It is a test of managers’ ability. It is like walking a tightrope. A little carelessness can easily break into pieces.

I agree with Dr. Lu that “managing the edge of chaos” is quite an interesting playing of words. However this way of management is tricky. It is hard to find a proper level of chaos when you want to balance the freedom of employees and the sound running of the company.It ‘s like walking on a rope. With one step wrong, you may die. Ok, let’s continue.
Lu Qi: next, the key to Netflix culture is communication. The question is, based on your experience, to what extent do you think it is most appropriate to be frank? Sometimes, if you overdo it, the chaos will get out of hand. If you don’t do it, your creativity will not be fully released. Have you ever had this kind of experience? How to adjust or manage the level of frankness in communication? What’s your experience?
The next question is, the key part of the culture is candor in communications. The question is, in all of your experience, so how do you manage the level of candor, sometimes if you over the edge, chaos will be too much, and if you enter the creativity won’t be unleashed enough. Do you have sort of experiences, and sort of framing of how you properly adjust or manage the level of candor in communication.
Hastings: look at the evolution of humans, we evolved to be polite because we live in towns with other people. It’s dangerous to be too honest. It’s dangerous to criticize or be criticized. We have to be aware of this, we have to admit that if we are all honest, we can grow better.
Growth is a good thing. As we all know, it can help people cope with pain.
For example, I, you know, succeed like me, when someone criticizes me, my God! I also have a heart beating, a red face and a upset heart. I have to learn to let go. I compare it to exercise, pushing through the last push-up, you’ll be in pain, but you know that pain will make you stronger.
So, how to say, it’s not only good for your muscles, it’s also good for your intelligence. So pain is a good thing. Pain makes you grow and stronger. It would be better to make employees willing to accept the psychological discomfort caused by criticism, because criticism is for their good. Just like exercise, if you overdo it, you can get hurt. The same is true of criticism. They want criticism to be justified, executable and practical. So criticism is also an art. But people have a natural psychological defense against criticism, which is not conducive to growth and learning.
Think of human evolution. We have evolved to be polite because we live in cities and villages around each other. It‘s scary to be too honest. So this danger of being criticized or getting critic is very strong in our psyche, and what you have to realize and get permission to is if we can all be honest to each other, we can all grow more.
And growth is good that everyone acknowledges that, and then that‘s helping people deal with the pain.

Because even as, you know, successful as I‘ve been, when I’m criticized, my god, my heart beats, I get all red, I‘m upset. I have to let go. I try to remember it’s like exercising. And you know when you doing those last push-ups, it hurts.And you know from the pain, that‘s getting you stronger.
So then that‘s helping to say, it’s true of your muscles, is also true of your intellect. So the pain is good. The pain is how you grow, the pain is how you get stronger. Then if you can get people to be willing to take the psychological pain of the critic ‘cause we’ll make them better and not break them down, that‘s great, just like we exercise if you do too much, you get hurt, it recks your body. Also on critic, they want it to be supported, they want it to be actionable, very practical. So there’s an art to do it very well, but it‘s getting through our psychological defenses that we all have, but they’re counter-productive for growing and learning.
Lu Qi: indeed, I have experienced what you said, and I have been trained and grown up as a result.
Definite , I saw myself experienced moments as you described the key phrasing of exercise and get in better intellectual...
Zhang Yijia: indeed, just like the saying “what can’t kill you will only make you stronger”, no matter how much the pain is, the experience will only make the armor of our body and mind more solid. And those criticisms, though unpleasant, are the nutrients we need to grow up.
Almost every successful person has his own “darkest moment” in his life. What impresses me is Elon Musk. Musk said in an interview that 2008 was the most difficult year for him. In this year, Tesla was still burning money, SpaceX’s falcon-1 rocket still failed in its third launch, and he and his ex-wife Justin divorced in this year.
On November 24, 2020, according to Forbes, musk surpassed Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg to become the second richest person in the world, with a value of 145 billion US dollars, second only to the 185 billion US dollars of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
He also expressed similar views with Hastings in interviews. “If you want to start a successful business, CEOs should spend more time seeking criticism, because it will make the company’s products as perfect as possible, rather than spending a lot of time on financing, meetings and PPT reports,” he said
Especially for many Chinese entrepreneurs, many people place themselves above others and do not want others to challenge and question them. However, as a leader of an enterprise, your success is not achieved by everyone’s praise for you, but by the performance of the enterprise. If accepting criticism can make the enterprise stronger, accepting criticism is a kind of reward.
OK, let’s talk about your book and Netflix. How is your company operating in the United States?
What you just said reminds me of the motto “what doesn‘t kill you only makes you stronger”.No matter how painful the challenge is, it will only build up our physical and intellectual powers. Those unpleasing criticisms are essential nutrients to our growth.

Nearly every success story has its darkest time and Elon Musk is one of them that impressed me. In an interview, Musk said 2008 was “the worst year of my life” as Tesla was losing money, SpaceX was failing the third time to launch its Falcon 1 rocket, and he was getting divorced.
But this year, Musk became the second-richest person in the world on November 24, surpassing Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg.Musk also had a similar view with you, Reed. He once said that CEOs should “spend less time on finance, spend less time in conference rooms,less time on PowerPoint, and more time seeking criticism of their product if they want to run a successful business.”
This is especially true for many Chinese entrepreneurs who put themselves high up and tolerate no doubts or challenges.In reality, your success doesn‘t come from others’ praises but from the performance of your company: If taking criticism makes your company stronger then it can be seen as a reward.
If you would like to, you probably can talk more about Netflix. So how is your business in the States now?
Hastings: very good novel coronavirus epidemic situation, because people have more time to watch drama, so we and Amazon are also the beneficiaries of the epidemic.
The business is good, because in COVID people watch more entertainment, so, we‘re like Amazon, and in that way it’s a COVID benefit.
Zhang Yijia: I know your new book ranks very well on Amazon in the United States. Have you been invited to school or organize a speech?
Your book No rule‘s rules was sold very well on Amazon.Are you invited to give lectures or take part in big promotional activities for schools or organisations?
Hastings: it seems good, because everyone I know is reading it. The book is now entering business schools as part of the curriculum. It provides a new perspective for managers of creative work.
You know, novel coronavirus pneumonia is not going to happen anywhere. So not yet.
Yeah,anecdotally it seems to be great, because everyone I know is reading it. And It‘s getting into business schools now. and you know it’s getting to be part of the curriculum. There might be a different approach when you are managing creative work.
You know in this COVID period I‘m trapped.
Zhang Yijia: can you summarize the whole book in one chapter? What do you particularly want Chinese readers to read?

And I just wondering if you have to pick up like one chapter from the book to give a whole picture of the book to, especially to the Chinese readers, what kind of content you would like to recommend?
Hastings: I would like to say that this book is written for creative enterprises, which are very tolerant of mistakes, as long as they create amazing things.
I would say our book is for creative organizations that are OK with making some mistakes, some errors as long as they invent amazing things.
Luchi: the next question, reed, is about feedback. Netflix specially formulated 4A feedback rule. Chinese entrepreneurs are very interested, and people are wondering if we can learn this. In your opinion, especially from the experience of Netflix, what is the key of 4A rule and how can it be effectively implemented?
So the question I was asking, next question, Reed, was regard to the feedback, in particular, Netflix, overall developed a 4A feedback guidelines. Our Chinese leadership audiences are very interested, there is a lot interest, people are thinking about how we can improve that. In your experience, what of the key points in that 4A guidelines, and how the guideline can be efficiently implemented, particularly from your experience in Netflix.
Zhang Yijia: sorry to interrupt. Maybe our audience is not familiar with Netflix’s 4A feedback rule. 4A the principle of feedback is aim to assist, actionable, feasible, appreciate, accept or reject. Now let’s give the picture to reed to answer Dr. Chi’s question.
Sorry to interrupt, Maybe our audience are not familiar with Netflix’s 4A feedback guilelines.The 4A feedback guidelines are Aim to assist; Actionable, Appreciate;Accept or discard.Now lets give time to Reed, pls answer Qi’s question.
Hastings: I want to say, gee, the key is to be different from social conventions. In life, we should respect and be polite to others. In our work, we need to break the rules so that we can learn more. We criticize each other. It’s uncomfortable at first, but it’s like building muscle strength. It’s natural to hear people say “please give me some advice” every day. Maybe at the end of the meeting, someone told you: “the meeting was very good, but this topic is too big and should be discussed in the future.” Making criticism and suggestions is not resistance or disrespect, but a manifestation of kindness and honesty. Kindness and respect are important.
But if we can be frank, that is, more candid, our organization will be better. What we are talking about is honesty at work. It’s not to say to others that I don’t like your clothes, or that I’m attracted to you, etc. It’s not related to work. What we are talking about is honesty at work, which not only makes the company, but also makes the products and services to a higher level.

I would say Qi, it‘s about giving each other permission to be different than the normal social contract. In human life, you know we have ways of being respectable and polite. We have to explicitly say we are going do it differently at work, because we can learn more. And let’s practice and give each other feedback. That‘s, you know,uncomfortable at first. And so you can develop the muscle, and then everyday heard people say “give me some feedback please,” you make it like you normalize but doing it, you know, more often than you need to. So it’s deadly learning so that they become comfortable at the end of the meeting, to say, you know, I thought the meeting went well, but you know we really didn‘t get to this big topic which we should do it in future topic. You know that’s not confrontational or disrespectful. So it‘s, often these things are attention of two goods. We admire kindness, and we admire honesty. We have to say, look into our attention, and normally we go by kindness and respect.
But it will be better for our organization if we go more honestly. So please can we all agree that what will be now is productive honesty, you don‘t want people say they don’t like how you dress or I‘m attracted to you, you know, there’s some other unprofessional honesty we are not talking about. We are talking about professional honesty to make the organization, then ultimately the product, your service better.
Zhang Yijia: Yes, honesty is very important. Honesty is a high-frequency word today. In fact, honesty is the consensus of many top entrepreneurs.
For example, Zhang Yiming, founder and CEO of the company, highly praised Jack Welch’s book win, especially the word “honesty”. He believes that the enemy of enterprise growth is the lack of honesty.
On the importance of honesty, Zhang Yiming constantly stressed. He said: “in business life is not honest is actually a selfish performance, in order to make your own life and work easier, and this thought is often lack of vision.”
With the growing scale of start-ups, the importance of collaboration has become increasingly prominent. When there are more people, we need to communicate. However, the information that language can convey is very limited. In addition, we will hide something. If we are not honest enough, it is difficult for start-ups to survive.
Well-said! Being frank is really important! Nowadays, honesty is a popular word and in fact, it also wins consensus among many leading entrepreneurs.

For example, the founder and CEO of ByteDance Zhang Yiming. He really admires the book Winning by Jack Welch. Especially the parts that emphasize the importance of honesty.
Nowadays, team work is becoming more and more important, your achievements are based on the supports of others. If you are not honest, you will hurt everyone including your self.
Rocky: Yes, you’re right. The next question is to review the wonderful journey of the founding and implementation of Netflix’s corporate culture. You have been trying to provide more freedom for employees and let them bear more corporate responsibilities. When I talked about this with others, I found it very interesting. But people are anxious about many potential problems. Can you share with us the pitfalls and problems you encountered when you started Netflix. The more freedom employees are given, the higher the level of anxiety. If you can share some of your experience, it will be very helpful for readers.
That‘s right, the next question is, look out to the overall journey of implementing or creating Netflix wonderful creature, what you really centre around giving employees more freedom and enable employees take more corporate responsibilities. There’s a lot of interest I would say, based on even my interaction with people that I know about. But people also have anxieties, if Iwere to follow some of the suggestions, potential problems stay if I‘m into. So the question is for you to share, when you are practicing, pioneering that culture in Netflix, all there any pitfalls you’re into, potential hidden problems you didn‘t forsee when you’re into and you have to adjust. Because as there‘s more interest in practicing this, the higher level of anxieties. If you can share some of the things you’re into and you need to adjust would be wonderful, and would be very helpful for the readers.
Hastings: this kind of anxiety is reasonable, because any organization is a complex system with a group of interrelated people, so you need to have a high talent density to have freedom, otherwise people will only make a lot of bad choices. You need to set a direction, and that’s identity, consistency, loose coupling, so people know how we’re going to serve our customers.
There are many interrelated parts, you can’t just take one element and say it will work, because it may not work out of context.
Therefore, to build up confidence bit by bit, the goal is not to manage, but to motivate people. Therefore, it is regarded as learning how to lead through encouragement bit by bit, rather than leading through management or telling people what to do. You know that factories are so important and effective to our civilization, so the spiritual model of factories extends to many other fields. Creative efforts are different from factories. We can’t let the boss tell the workers what to do from top to bottom. So think again about the shift from management to motivation.

The anxiety is sensible, because think of any organization as a complex system with a batch of inter-dependents, so you need to have a great talent density, to be able to have the freedom, or else people just make a lot bad choices, you need to be setting direction that‘s the highly alligned loosely couple, so people know in what way are we trying toserve the customer.
So you know there‘s a lot inter-connected parts, you can’t just take one element and say that‘s going to work ’cause out of the context it probably won‘t work.
And so it is building up confidence bit by bit that the goal is not to manage people, the goal is not to manage, that the goal is to inspire people instead, so think about it as bit by bit learning how to lead by inspiration, instead of lead by management or telling people what to do. You know the factory has been so important to our civilization, so productive, so the mental model of the factory beleads into many other areas, and creative endeavors are just different from the factory. And we still have the boss top down tell the workers what to do or orientation. so again think of the shift being moving from management to inspiration.
Rocky: Yes, it makes a lot of sense, reed. Because you just mentioned that. Specifically, cooperation with China. For many reasons, Chinese traditional culture is “one speech”, which has been a common norm for many years. Transition to different management methods, especially the use of scenario management rather than control. Now people see a new idea of “release” and “control”. But many people dare not give up the power of management. Netflix may have faced similar problems from its early establishment, development and growth, and today’s leading position in the world. How do you manage this process through scenarios? Nowadays, the common practice of Chinese enterprises is very traditional. Your skills or experience in this field will bring great help to the Chinese audience who are thinking about this problem.

Yeah, so this is terrifically articulate, Reed. with regard to corporations in China. For a lot of reasons, the culture tradition “one man control” the boss making the dicisions, sort of the common norm being many years. And transition into a different way in managing, particularly using contexts vs control. People see the potential benefit, but would be hesitant or fear of giving up controls. So you likely may have faced similar decision points, as you work through from the early days of Netflix to its massive growth towards today‘s powerful position in the world. In that journey, how you’ve been, sort of thinking about control in the context, in particular, giving tips or thoughtful experiences to the Chinese audience and readership would be very helpful for all of the readers who are thinking about this maybe struggling in it. Just because sort of the tradition the common practice in today‘s corporate world in China.
Hastings: in the United States, we have many leaders, such as Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, who are amazing and more powerful than God. They ask for more details and give more guidance, which is a way to success. You have a genius in charge of the company, and the rest of you just need to have a meeting to discuss the instructions put forward by the genius. The rise and fall of the company depends entirely on this state of genius, and the company becomes too dependent on someone. Suppose you are such a genius, the core of the company. Then you want to broaden, you want the company to stay healthy. Just like fitness, with more and more muscles in the company, you can have less and less control over the company. At the beginning, the company will encounter many problems, so many decisions are made by the leaders. But with the development of the company, more and more people will participate in it. There will be 300, 3000 or even 30000 employees. All of them will continue to make progress, grow up and learn to think independently.

In the US, we have many leaders like Bill Gates, Elon Mask, Steve Jobs, amazing leaders, and they‘re stronger than Gods.They command more detail, they can get more instructions, and that’s one way to succeed. You got a genius, you know, running the company, and just meet and get all the decisions to the genius, and the genius decides. The challenges with the companies is they rise and fall with their genius. They become too dependent on the genius. And so even if you are such a genius, then it‘s like you want to broaden, you want that organization to last longer than you and to be healthy, so then it’s building the muscle when you‘re doing less and less every year. In the start-up of this, it’s probably true that, you know, the leaders gonna make a lot of decisions, because it‘s so challenging with start-up. But again as you grow, you wanna shift to building muscle, so that all of the people are engaged, you’ve got three hundred, three thousand and thirty thousand, all continuing to improve and grow and think for themselves.
Zhang Yijia: Yes, I agree with that. It’s true that many companies rely too much on their founders in the process of growth. They hold them up to the altar and let them direct everything and give orders. However, with the rapid development of the world, no one is perfect in the face of future challenges. What the team really needs is “less control and more scenarios”. Only in this way can front-line employees get more information to help you make better decisions instead of focusing on the CEO.
Dr. Qi, what’s your problem?
I agree with that. It is a common situation that people in a company put their CEO on the pedestal and let him give all the instructions, let him tackle all problems, and let him control every tiny little thing.However , the world changes faster and faster, and nobody is perfect, to face the challenges of the coming future, what a team really needs is “less control and more context”. In this way, employees can obtain more detailed information and make better decisions, instead of letting CEOs.
Qi, do you have any other questions?
Lu Qi: I hope I can ask two more questions. The first problem is that from the leadership level, the development of the company gives more freedom to employees, while bureaucracy still exists. Usually, as the company grows, bureaucracy will become more and more serious. In this case, the speed of decision-making will slow down, and the efficiency of the company has become a problem. After employees have more freedom, how to reduce bureaucracy in the development of the company? I’d like to know your opinion on this issue.

Hopefully we can squeeze Reed for two questions. One question is, from our leaders, which is the following, as the company grows, when we start to give more freedom to the employees, the worries, the bureaucracy still remains, and typically as the company grows, the bureaucracy still gets more and more. To the point whereby, there‘s a lot of decisions slow down, and corporate efficiency also becomes a problem. People are interested in knowing your thought, as we give more freedom to the employees,how we also work to reduce the level of bureaucracy as the company grows.
Hastings: it needs to be realized by promoting the values of the enterprise, including how employees interact, what goals the company has, in what areas there is innovation, and what problems customers face. If you embrace challenges and have clear expectations for each other, people can solve problems independently and do well. This is very different from the typical factory mode of thinking – giving instructions to workers. Therefore, this is not simply to hand over the key in hand and let the company fall into “anarchy”. On the contrary, it allows you to guide values, motivate and play a greater role in the larger environment.
You have to compensate for that freedom to be preaching about the values, both how people interact, and about what the firm is trying to do, what areas are innovative, what the problems are that the customers are facing. So if you bring alive the challenges, and you‘re clear about the expectations on behavior with each other, then you got another guidance, that independent people can figure things out and do them really well, as opposed to be told what to do, and organized the typical kind of thought of factory men. So again, it’s not you just turn the keys over, and let anarchy rule. Instead you‘re trying to lead values and inspiration. And set in context.
Lu Qi: reed, many people in China regard you as an example of entrepreneurship and innovation. Do you have any secrets you want to teach to the young generation of entrepreneurs in China?
Reed, there‘s so many people in China, look up to you as a real model for entrepreneurs, for innovations. Do you have any secret advice, key points, you want Chinese young generations, entrepreneurs,to be exact, to know?
Hastings: I think the most exciting work is global work. Tencent is a global enterprise. I am a super fan of Tencent’s global development. Global business brings the world closer. I hope that the audience can have the desire to create, to create a national and even global proud of the performance, while making the world more closely linked.

I think some of the most exciting work is the global work, like Tencent has been doing all around the world. I‘m just a great fan of their such a global ambition. That will help glue the world together. I hope all of your listeners aspire to create something successful and great in China, but also successful and great in the whole world and brings us together.
Rocky: Thank you very much, reed! Your wisdom and ideas are of great significance to Chinese entrepreneurs. Thank you for your time today.
Thank you so much, Reed! I think your wisdom and thoughts will mean so much to China‘s entrepreneurs and innovators.We really appreciate your time today.
Hastings: looking forward to seeing you in Beijing.
See you in Beijing soon.
Lu Qi: looking forward to seeing you in Beijing.
See you soon.Absolutely looking forward to.
Zhang Yijia: Thank you for the wonderful dialogue between Dr. Lu Qi and Hastings. I believe today’s dialogue will bring new inspiration to many Chinese friends.
Today’s dialogue reminds me of Dr. Lu Qi’s view in his article “how to deconstruct an enterprise”: to make a good product, the most important thing is culture, not talent.
Culture is like air. Can’t see, can’t touch, but decide life and death.
2021 begins, and we are all at a new starting point. We are in an era full of changes, a magnificent era. We are moving from the industrial era to the intelligent era. The new era needs new enterprises, new methods and new ideas.
Many entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs like to read. However, a large number of management books and methodologies on the market are still the management methodology of the industrial age. The times have changed, and the methods need to change. But Netflix shows us a more flexible and flexible methodology of the new era, and also gives us a sense of an informal corporate culture and spirit.
Therefore, interested readers can really study this book, I believe you will like it.
That’s all for today’s live broadcast. Thank you for your time!