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Netflix culture deck: Experts pick top most impactful slides

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  • Netflix CEO Reed Hastings first publicly released his company’s culture deck in 2009.
  • In more than 120 slides, Netflix broke down its management and cultural philosophy to prepare potential recruits for what it would be like to work with the then DVD-by-mail operation.
  • The company regularly updates its cultural philosophy in a memo on its website. But current document retains many of the core principles of the original.
  • Business Insider breaks down the most bold, and at times controversial, slides that still hold up 10 years later.
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

Ten years ago, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings first publicly released his company’s culture deck. In more than 120 slides, Netflix broke down its management and cultural philosophy to prepare potential recruits for what it would be like to work with the then DVD-by-mail operation.

The presentation, previously used as an internal onboarding document for new hires, offered a peek into the culture of the growing tech operation, which is now worth more than $125 billion and employs about 7,100 people around the world.

Some aspects of Netflix’s management philosophy instantly stirred up controversy, like its high-performance culture, lack of a formal vacation policy, and aversion to “brilliant jerks.” 

But the document also set an example for other employers, who have since adopted some of its aspects, or begun formalizing and being more transparent about their own cultures.

Top Facebook exec Sheryl Sandberg once said the deck “may well be the most important document ever to come out of the Valley.”

Netflix regularly updates its culture and management philosophy in a memo on its website. But the document retains many of the core principles of the original deck.

“The Netflix culture deck, when it came out, was certainly an innovative way to approach a corporate culture,” Jodi Chavez, the president of staffing agency Randstad Professionals’ life sciences division, as well as its executive search arm, Tatum, told Business Insider. “The majority of ideas in the deck are still very relevant today.”

Here are the 10 most impactful takeaways of the culture deck that was published in 2009.

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