Zuckerberg On Facebook’s Employee Total: Small Is Good

During Thursday’s second-quarter earnings call, Facebook Co-Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg was asked about the size of the company when it came to number of employees and, while Facebook is expanding, he expressed a preference for remaining lean and mean.

On the call, he said:

On your second question about the overall size of the company, we’ve always been significantly smaller per employee compared with the number of people who we serve in the world. So it’s really based into the company that we have to build systems and software that take this into account and leverage that employees we have. That’s actually one of the reasons why a lot of people love working here, and one of the biggest reasons why people fight to join the company and stay here.

So, it’s also affected the strategy, right? I mentioned that we believe that all these consumer products and maybe even more than consumer products that people use will become social over time, but we can’t build all those things ourselves, so we focused on building the platform. Over time, it might make sense for us to build more of these things ourselves, but because of the scale that we’re at, we really focused on the three things that I laid out today.

This shift toward mobile is incredibly important. Building the highest-quality applications and products is really critical, building a platform so that the million more developers who use Facebook can build this product. It’s the highest-leverage thing that we can do, and we think that social ads are just going to monetize much better than non-social ads as we increase the percent of our overall advertising that has social context in it, so that’s kind of where we are, and we’re basically growing by trying to find as many talented engineers as we can for the most part, but I think, for the foreseeable future, we’re just going to be way smaller than other companies that address significant or comparable size user bases.

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