Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang Hates One-on-One Meetings, With One Exception: 'If They Ask Me, I’ll Drop Everything'

  • Huang leads one of the most highly capitalized companies but hates one-on-one meetings with his team.

  • He believes in sharing information with the whole team so that everyone can contribute to solutions.

Jensen Huang hates one-on-one meetings
No comments Twitter Flipboard E-mail

Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang’s very personal leadership style has turned his company into one of the top three technology companies with the biggest market capitalization, behind only Microsoft and Apple. At times, Nvidia has even dethroned Tim Cook's empire.

Huang doesn’t want to know you’ve done your job. The Nvidia CEO recently attended a developer event for the payments startup Stripe. In an interview with Stripe co-founder Patrick Collison, Huang confessed that he hates regular status meetings. In his view, managers and supervisors already do that job.

"We CEOs have to work on things that no one else can do or make decisions that no one else can make," Huang said. "We should be jumping between stuck projects, getting them back on track, and picking up new ideas. But definitely not status reports."

Access to information is essential. Huang has a team of 60 managers from various disciplines who report directly to him. During his speech, the Nvidia CEO laughingly admitted that it’s not a very conventional organizational chart, but it’s highly efficient to ensure the flow of information. The CEO communicates constantly with his team, who update him with the information he needs throughout the day without scheduling a meeting.

“Information should not be based on privileged access. All information is shared with the entire management team at the same time. I love that everybody works off the same song sheet, and we can all contribute to solving a problem. Everybody has heard the reasoning behind the problem. Everybody has heard the reasoning behind the solution. Everybody,” Huang stated.

Having 60 one-on-one meetings means missing 60 opportunities to learn. Collison, the Stripe co-founder, told Huang that the lack of one-on-one meetings could reduce feedback on his team’s work. But the Nvidia CEO has a quite different take on meetings, with one exception: “Unless they need me. Then I’ll drop everything for them.” Huang said.

“I give them feedback in front of everyone. This is really important. First, feedback is learning. Why are you the only one who should learn? We should all learn from this opportunity. Half the time, I’m not right, but reasoning in front of everybody helps everybody learn to reason through that person. The problem I have with one-on-one meetings and not giving feedback is that you deprive a lot of people of the same learning. Learning from other people’s mistakes is the best way to learn,” he stated.

Trust in his employees. During the interview, Nvidia’s CEO emphasized the value of his employees and held them responsible for their work. “The fact that everyone has access to the information they need to do their job empowers people,” he declared. “For me, having a team of 60 people is not scalable down. It would require a lot of middle management.”

Huang’s leadership. This leadership philosophy has earned Huang years of complete loyalty from his employees, who recognize him as a leader.

In addition, this philosophy, based on trust in his employees’ abilities, has made Nvidia one of the most profitable companies in the world. Each of Nvidia’s 29,600 employees represent a value of $98.7 million relative to the company’s market capitalization.

Image | Stripe

Related | NVIDIA Presents Project G-Assist: a Chatbot That Can Help You Defeat the Final Boss in Video Games

Home o Index