“The Secret Life of CEOs,” a six part podcast series by the people behind Freakonomics Radio, is packed with tasty little thought nuggets from some of the most celebrated executives in the world, like Richard Branson, PepsiCo’s Indra Nooyi and G.E.’s Jack Welch.
Oh, and Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
In the newest episode, host Stephen Dubner chatted with the social media titan, who revealed that he has come along way as a manager — and there’s one important takeaway a boss or manager can do to make his or her company a better place to not only work at — but thrive.
In Facebook’s early days, listeners learn, Zuckerberg was a notoriously bad listener.
“I thought he showed an incredible audacity to not learn and listen as a leader,” says Jeff Sonnenfeld, a leadership scholar at Yale. “Oh my gosh, has he changed. And he’s had a great board, great mentors, and also he’s just been a great learner. He has been remarkably different now as a leader than he was when he first became CEO.”
What changed, exactly?
In Zuckerberg’s words, it was only a matter of trust. He started green lighting more ideas, and stopped outwardly dismissing the ones he disagreed with. And once he relinquished some of his control, Facebook became the social networking legend it is today.
Here’s the exchange he and Dubner had: