Never prioritize your company over yourself.
It doesn't help anyone to be held hostage.
If I don’t want to question one thing from my direct reports then whether they feel value and why they are with us. I don’t want them to prioritize the company over themselves.
I firmly believe for instance that because I have several legs to stand on financially I’m better as a product leader.
I don’t have to be anywhere. I don’t have to be at Jua.ai where I’m currently the Head of Product. I am here because I want to and believe in the opportunity. But I’m not held hostage. My CEO knows this, my team knows this.
When I consult with clients then because I want to, I don’t negotiate rates, it’s take it or leave it. I spent time having this freedom.
I can challenge without fear on business-critical topics even if I would think that I’d step on someone’s toes. That’s exactly why I serve the company/client better than someone who doesn’t treat it this way. My style is 100% conviction, I have no problem committing and disagreeing if necessary. But you won’t find me in a situation I don’t believe in.
The best ICs I can count on today are the ones that could be somewhere else but they want to stay with our company out of free choice. And they all have this one thing in common:
They’re not afraid of challenging our top assumptions hard.