The Innovation Lessons Marissa Mayer Will Take to Yahoo [Video]

7/17/12Follow @wroush

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innovation really involves iteration—that you want to bird-walk your way to the perfect product.

On hiring:

Technology all about the people. It’s all about the ideas. Which means hiring is really, really important.

On women engineers in the workplace:

We’re always really focused on having a good gender balance at Google. The goal is to have 25 percent of the technical workforce at Google be women … We realized that not only should we recruit women, but we should make sure we should build a workplace that was good for technical women.

On decision-making styles:

Google has been a great place for consensus-based decision making. But over time, consensus-based decision making has been confused with unanimous decision making … Decision-makers still need to hear everyone, but it’s not about unanimous decision-making, which can really slow you down.

On driving employees hard while helping them to avoid burnout: 

I’ve been working 80 to 120 hour weeks the entire time. People say, `How is that possible?’ I think it’s different for every person. My theory around this is that it’s important for every person to find their personal rhythm. Burnout isn’t about working really hard for a really long period of time. Burnout is caused by resentment. So the important thing is to know what you really need [and for managers to respect that.]

On never getting to the bottom of your to-do list:

When you are doing a startup or scaling a business, there’s going to be an infinite number of things that you could do. And making sure that you prioritize the important things and spend your time there, and sort of celebrate the fact that you are not going to get to certain things at the bottom of the list, is really freeing.

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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