Leaving Facebook

By editor on February 20, 2018 — 1 min read

Look, I realized it was time for me to leave is because I wasn’t doing a good job of getting them to where they needed to be. So if you want to ask me what did I want them to do?

I wanted Facebook to build a phone. I think that was well-known. I think it was also well-known that I was building a version of a phone. Whatever.

At the time, it didn’t make sense because it just needed capital and focus and the kind of separation… almost like a Google X kind of an approach, that I think was kind of antithetical to the culture, at the time, of that company. And, in fairness, I think that was absolutely the right decision, and it’s a failure of me, because I also exacerbated that tension.

I had a tremendous amount of political and social capital at that company because of what I was doing. I like lost myself for a little bit and fed my own ego and was on this mission to build a phone, in a not really great collaborative way, using a bunch of decisions that I made myself. That stuff just never ends well.

This was an insight also into what I’m good at. I’m not good at bringing people along. I mean, I’m good at building products and bringing small teams along, and then building things. But I’m not good at leading thousands of people in like an organized way. I’m good at telling 1,000 people what to do, but I’m not good at leading 1,000 people in a collaborative, “Let me get you over the line.” That’s not how I roll. It’s like, “This is what we’re fucking doing, and we’re gonna do it.”

That dog doesn’t hunt at a multi-thousand person company.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDVDWNguPs4 (21:55)

Posted in: Leadership

Editor's Note

These are Chamath Palihapitiya's words. They are probably some of the best thoughts on VC, business, and life, but were scattered around the Internet. They live now in this archive.