Leadership

7 brilliant management strategies Mark Zuckerberg used to build Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg
Kay Nietfeld | AFP | Getty Images
Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook crushed quarterly earnings estimates on Wednesday, and the company's stock hit an all-time high.

It's another milestone in a long list of wins for Mark Zuckerberg, the 32-year-old founder and CEO of the world's biggest social network.

If you want to emulate the young billionaire, take a look at where he's focused his time and energy. Here are seven management strategies that Zuckerberg used to build the Facebook empire.

1. He's not chained to his desk.

Zuckerberg has said he doesn't spend more than 50 to 60 hours a week in the office. He does, however, spend a lot of time thinking about "how to connect the world and serve our community better." He may be onto something. Studies show that working long hours can actually make you less productive.

2. He stays focused on the mission.

Zuckerberg recently told aspiring entrepreneurs to translate your values into a business and to focus your company on the change you want to see. "Once you know what change you want to make in the world, all of the tactics and strategies for how you do that just fit into that change," he said.

3. He eliminates small decisions.

You'll often see Zuckerberg wearing the same type of gray shirt. That's because he believes that making a bunch of small decisions throughout the day can take up too much energy. "I really want to clear my life so that I have to make as few decisions as possible, other than how to best serve this community," he said.

4. He acts more than he reacts.

To maximize his effectiveness, Zuckerberg is proactive rather than reactive. There are enough things that come up during the day that you can fill up your entire day reacting to them, he's said. Of course you have to be responsive, but it's important to know what you want to accomplish each day, he noted.

5. He wants employees to correct him.

It may sound harsh, but it's part of the culture at Facebook. Employees will stand up during a town hall and correct Zuckerberg if he says something wrong. "I like openness," he said. "It's a little embarrassing, but it's good to have."

6. He tries not to dwell on mistakes.

Zuckerberg has said he'd tell his younger self to move on from mistakes quickly. You're going to make mistakes no matter what you do, he said. "People spend a lot of time focusing on not making mistakes or regretting them," but you shouldn't strive to be right about everything.

7. He takes calculated risks.

Looking back at the history of Facebook, you'll find a track record of bold moves. Zuckerberg took the company public in 2012, bought Instagram for $1 billion and WhatsApp for $19 billion, and bet on the future of mobile. But if he hadn't taken big risks — like, say, dropping out of Harvard to launch a social network — he wouldn't see big payoffs.