Principles

Last updated 6 months ago

1. Embrace the Truth.

  • Work hard to find objective measurements to back up your opinions.

  • Tackle the truth head-on, and don’t say anything behind anyone’s back that you wouldn’t say to their face.

  • Keep information open.

  • Ensure that everyone is making decisions from the same data, and err on the side of oversharing.

  • Empower team members to discover information by themselves.

  • Always act with integrity.

2. Think Big.

  • Don’t work on things as they appear now, always prepare for the next level up.

  • Think ten years down the road.

  • Whatever you do, ask yourself if it has a long-term beneficial impact. Short-term thinking might get you through the quarter, but will lead to problems later on.

  • Our key advantage over everyone else: by the time five or ten years pass, it’s checkmate, the others cannot turn back time and invest their resources like we did.

3. Make It Happen.

  • Focus on the key constraints. You can’t do everything, always.

  • Thinking long-term is not an excuse for being slow. It just means we set goals that require an incredible amount of time and effort, and this has to start right now.

  • Develop a strong bias for action.

  • Whatever else you do, you must ensure that you Make It Happen. All the process, planning, and work count for nothing if we fail to understand why we are doing what we do, and what the key results that we are looking for are.

4. Insist on the Highest Standards.

  • Be clear with our standards.

  • Our standards are the minimum required (the floor), not something to attempt to reach (the ceiling).

  • Do not compromise on our standards.

  • Insist that everyone is always raising them.

  • Give clear feedback to individuals if they don’t meet our standards.

  • Remove those that cannot consistently meet and exceed our standards.

5. End User Obsession.

  • Be obsessed with the end user.

  • If they win, we win.

  • That doesn’t mean that the customer is always right or that you need to accept meetings on a Friday at 6pm.

  • Focus on what matters.

6. Frugality.

  • Spend on things that have a long-term impact.

  • Ask yourself what you would do if you had 1/10th of the budget. How would you creatively solve a problem without spending money?

7. Keep It Simple, Stupid.

  • Remember that large groups of people can be incredibly stupid, so keep teams small.

  • No bonus points for complex charts, instructions, or systems. If you can’t explain it to a newbie on Day 1, you’re probably making it too complex.

  • Be constantly on the lookout for ways to simplify processes, and don’t treat anything as sacred.

8. Have Fun.

  • Inevitably, to achieve anything of note, we will spend a large portion of our time at work.

  • It’s best to ensure that we have fun with what we’re doing.

  • Don’t be an asshole, and don’t tolerate assholes.

9. Fail Well.

  • Everyone will make mistakes.

  • Accept that these mistakes are inevitable if we are going to try new and interesting things.

  • We should insist on creating the best place in the world to fail at.

  • That said, failures need to be due to bold bets, not due to lack of trying, and valuable lessons have to be extracted each time.

10. Always Be Learning.

  • What you know now will be redundant in two year’s time.

  • Always be upgrading your knowledge and skills.

  • Encourage others to do the same.

  • The best way to learn is to teach, so do it.