Netflix’s Culture, Cultural Traits & Core Values

Netflix culture, core values, company work behaviors, corporate organizational cultural traits, video streaming business case study
The Netflix app on the App Store. Netflix’s company culture (work culture) addresses the organizational needs of the company’s operations in the entertainment and video streaming market. (Photo: Public Domain)

Netflix’s company culture (work culture) promotes human resource development for effective business operations in the international market for entertainment and video streaming services. The company culture leads to expectations that motivate employees to adopt and nurture beneficial workplace behaviors. For example, communication effectiveness and diverse ideas are supported through Netflix’s work culture. Thus, strategic goals and operational objectives are reached with the help of the traits of the corporate culture. The company’s human resource management and development programs for this organizational culture motivate workplace behaviors for entertainment goals and strategic objectives based on Netflix’s mission statement and vision statement. The human resource competencies achieved through the business culture empower Netflix to grow in the international entertainment and streaming market.

Philosophy and Core Values. Netflix’s company culture relates to the business philosophy, “people over process.” This philosophy prioritizes human resources and core values that suit the entertainment and streaming business. Netflix’s core values are (1) wise judgment, (2) selflessness for the business organization, (3) courage to take risks and do what is right, (4) effective communication, (5) respectful inclusion, (6) integrity and ethical conduct, (7) passion for the business success of Netflix, (8) flexible innovation, and (9) curiosity for learning and improvement. These values reflect the business philosophy that affects Netflix’s work culture, human resource management, and business development. The company’s business philosophy and core values, like innovation, support competitiveness that mitigates the impact of the competitive rivalry demonstrated in the Five Forces analysis of Netflix.

Traits of Netflix’s Culture

Netflix’s organizational culture directs human resources toward achieving excellent performance. The social environment involving workplace norms, customs, and traditions based on this corporate culture and its core values ensures continuous improvement for business success in the entertainment industry. The following are the main traits of Netflix’s culture:

  1. Autonomy
  2. Open information exchange
  3. Direct communication
  4. High effectiveness
  5. Anti-rule philosophy
  6. Inclusion and diversity

Netflix’s work culture promotes the autonomy of workers. Employees are given flexibility in the way they do their jobs. This cultural trait allows workers to develop their own ideas and solutions to problems in business processes at Netflix. The freedom that comes with autonomy means that the company culture contributes to employee morale and job satisfaction in working for the video streaming company. Also, this characteristic of Netflix’s business culture leads to organizational flexibility for dealing with competitive challenges in the industry.

Open information exchange is a cultural trait that motivates employees to share valuable information that benefits Netflix. The company’s work culture encourages open communication that requires effective communications skills, including listening, speaking, and writing skills. With this trait of its corporate culture, Netflix facilitates ideas that can improve business processes and output, including content (movies and series). The divisions, hierarchy, and lines of communication in Netflix’s organizational structure (company structure) influence how the company’s business culture leads to information exchange. For example, information exchange is easier within groups and teams, although the company’s work culture also motivates workers to share information between groups and teams.

Netflix’s company culture also promotes direct communication, which ensures effective information exchange with minimal issues. The company values candidness and directness, which reduces miscommunication and confusion in information exchange. With this trait, Netflix’s organizational culture supports effectiveness and efficiency of communication throughout the business organization.

High effectiveness in Netflix’s organizational culture deals with achieving goals and delivering results at the individual and team levels. This cultural trait aims to maximize the company’s competitive advantages by maintaining a workforce that achieves strategic goals and objectives for the entertainment and streaming business. Effectiveness and related variables, such as workflow efficiency, can support economies of scale and other competitive advantages defined in the SWOT analysis of Netflix. This means that the business culture is a factor in the company’s long-term success in the streaming market and beyond.

Netflix’s culture supports an anti-rule philosophy, which minimizes limits imposed on human resources. The company believes that rules tend to make business organizations less flexible and unable to adapt to changing industry environments. Thus, this trait of Netflix’s work culture has the benefit of supporting employee autonomy, which is another cultural trait, by reducing limits on how employees perform to satisfy their job requirements. Another benefit of this anti-rule trait of the organizational culture is its support for Netflix’s ability to adapt its strategies to match trends in its target market.

Inclusion and diversity in Netflix’s company culture support diverse perspectives that affect decisions in the business organization. This cultural trait addresses demand for diverse stories or entertainment content for diverse audiences. The resulting diversity permeating the organization accounts for cultural differences among target markets and segments. This trait of the corporate culture allows for new and diverse ideas for product development, which comes with Netflix’s generic competitive strategy and intensive growth strategies for gaining market share and ensuring profitable operations in regional markets despite competitors. These competitors include the media and entertainment businesses of Disney, Sony, and NBCUniversal, as well as the entertainment and streaming services of Apple, Facebook (Meta), Google (Alphabet), Microsoft, and Amazon. The organizational culture of each of these competitors also promotes workplace behaviors for competitiveness against Netflix in the global market.

Strategic Implications of Netflix’s Company Culture

The alignment between Netflix’s culture and the social factors in target markets affects business effectiveness in satisfying subscribers or viewers. For example, the popularity of new movies and series depends on diverse and culturally appropriate content ideas that the work culture promotes in the company’s human resources and workplace. This business aspect means that the business culture addresses the social trends discussed in the PESTEL/PESTLE analysis of Netflix and promotes excellent performance of human resources and the company’s success in the international entertainment market.

In terms of Netflix’s CSR/ESG and stakeholder management, the organizational culture motivates workers to participate in charitable and philanthropic activities. The cultural traits of autonomy and anti-rule philosophy, combined with the business philosophy of “people over process” and the company’s work life philosophy and core values, encourage employees to choose charitable or philanthropic programs. Considering the diversity factor of the company culture, Netflix’s corporate citizenship addresses the diversity of its corporate responsibilities in relation to the external social environment of the business organization.


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