Thursday, July 9, 2009

Yahoo! Advice

Annie, David and I got to meet with Tim Reilly a couple weeks ago. He was one of the very early major business development guys.

Here are Annie and my notes from our meeting:

* Tim came on in his role when there was 50 people
o 40 surfer/engineers, 10 business related people

* Culture really evolves from the people you are hiring - A people hire A people, B people hire C people

* The key to Yahoo's early success was all about their hiring culture -- this was the most important function in the entire business
o Risktakers
o Look at the last page of the resume to gain insight into the kind of people they were
o Candidates who were open to facing adversity
o Critical thinkers
o Candidates who know how to deal with rejection
o Fit more important than background
o Ability to zoom in and out --> dig into a problem and then zoom out to 50,000 feet
o Ability to understand the vision and solve problems
o Continuous learners
o People who were nimble and could make decisions quickly and MOVE ON
o No egos

* "We were making everything else up as we went along"
o Same with XChange - we are in the Private Market. Like the Wild West!

* Continue to Think Bigger
o Adidas - "Impossible is Nothing."

* We always emphasized teamwork and good communication
o We had people come in to do 360s -- (we can do that internally at XChange)
o We had a community that emphasized teamwork --> this lead to peer pressure
o Salary and bonuses based on how your team did
+ Engineers, Sales people, Business Development were all on the same team
+ Promoting constant collaboration
+ Team Building/Team Pain

* Mediocre people - "DEATH OF THE COMPANY"

* Thoughts for Running an effective meeting
o Don't meet if you can convey it in a quick email
o Set Objectives
o Provide Agenda
o Assign Meeting Prep if necessary
o Leave with Key Next Action Steps

* Care about the customer more than anything - lose if you outsource customer service

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