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Facebook Leads the Next Generation of Tech Public Companies

Zuck’s Sets  Example How Technology Companies Can Maintain Their Creativity After Going Public

“Make the world more open and connected”

What a week for Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg. He had his  28th Birthday, took his company public and married his  college sweetheart   who graduated from medical school on his birthday.

Watching the news clips of the remote NASDAQ  bell ringing at HQ  in Palo Alto it was good to hear Zuck  reiterate to his  company employees,

“Our Mission isn’t to be a public company.

Our mission is to Make the world more open and connected“.

There is  amazing energy working within  a technology driven company where everyone is  in creative mode and thinking outside of the box is  the standard  mode of operation. Everyone is on fire.

One Silicon Valley  company I worked for everyone seemed  suspiciously too happy on my job interview.  They were having fun on the job so I was convinced there was something  in the drinking water.  I had a great time when I worked there until the  IPO started to change everything.

Unfortunately when the “suits” came into evaluate the company in preparation for the company  to  go  public  I watched with interest  as  the  atmosphere  began to change rapidly into a  solemn work environment.

The fun went away and the focus was no longer about creating state of the art products and being on the edge of technology   but instead keeping the stockholders happy and saving one’s own  job as cuts were  sometimes expected to make the numbers look better at SEC filing.

As part of the agreement the creative leader/founder was leaving after the IPO.    He was the heart of the  company.  The company was never the same after that.

Much like Apple’s creativity disappeared when when Steve Jobs left in 1985.   After his return in 1995 the creativity was rejuvenated with his direction  and  Apple began deliver amazing products again

Whatever version of the Apple story about Job’s departure one believes.    having the creative mind at the helm is vital for a technology company to continue creating and innovating.

Zuck has been fortunate to have the guidance of  great mentors like Gates and Jobs and to  have  Sheryl Sandberg as Chief Operating Officer. This COO  has the required  corporate management experience   to run operations before and  after the IPO to guide the company without tampering with the creative element  of the company lead by  Zuckerberg.

In the past  a technology company going public lost its creative leaders to the CEOs  and  VPs with  immediately   purpose to take the company public.   The management is then driven to make it about the numbers.   Unfortunately often this would slowly destroy the creative processes.

The technology, innovation and  creativity became secondary to the stock offering and the focus was on keeping the stock holder happy.  After  going public many tech companies have not  been the same.

Until now.  Zuckerberg/Sandberg and Facebook are the    new breed of technology public companies.  They have   shown  the financial world how a tech company can go public and not lose  the  creative edge.

It was never about the money for Zuck, Gates and Jobs.  It was about their mission and what they believed in which grew incredible companies with  innovative employees doing what they enjoy.

When people  enjoy what they  do  incredible results transpire.  And the money  follows.

Congratulations, Zuck.

Awesome week.

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