Empowering Your Team

Mark Pincus, founder/CEO of our portfolio company Zynga, is interviewed in today's NY Times on the topic of leadership. The part about empowering and scaling the team is really great.

You can manage 50 people through the strength of your personality and lack of sleep. You can touch them all in a week and make sure they’re all pointed in the right direction. By 150, it’s clear that that’s not going to scale, and you’ve got to find some way to keep everybody going in productive directions when you’re not in the room.

Maybe Mark can manage 50 people through willpower and lack of sleep but I've seen many entrepreneurs hit this wall with much smaller teams. The question is what are you going to do about it?

Mark says "make everyone the CEO of something."

I’d turn people into C.E.O.’s. One thing I did at my second company was to put white sticky sheets on the wall, and I put everyone’s name on one of the sheets, and I said, “By the end of the week, everybody needs to write what you’re C.E.O. of, and it needs to be something really meaningful.” And that way, everyone knows who’s C.E.O. of what and they know whom to ask instead of me. And it was really effective. People liked it. And there was nowhere to hide.

He goes on to explain how this works and why it is so powerful. Read the entire interview if you are running a startup and looking for some ideas on scaling the team.

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