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Interview with Carol Bartz: Imagining a World of No Annual Reviews

A great interview in the NYT today with Carol Bartz, the CEO of Yahoo, discussing feedback, leadership, and career advice.

What are the most important leadership lessons you’ve learned?

I grew up in the Midwest. My mom died when I was 8, so my grandmother raised my brother and me. She had a great sense of humor, and she never really let things get to her.

My favorite story is when we were on a farm in Wisconsin; I would have probably been 13. There was a snake up in the rafter of the machine shed. And we ran and said, “Grandma, there’s a snake.” And she came out and she knocked it down with a shovel, chopped its head off and said, “You could have done that.” And, you know, that’s the tone she set. Just get it done. Just do it. Pick yourself up. Move on. Laugh.

What about leading others?

A lot of it is just picking the right team and just picking people so much better than you are, and involving them in a decision. Everybody on my team — I couldn’t do their jobs. I could not. I really mean that. So I figured out early on that the way you’re successful is you hire really successful people.

Read the rest.