Creating an Organizational Culture that Nurtures the Freedom of Thinking
This holiday, I visited San Francisco Bay Area, which is the home for many start-ups and IT giants. I can’t help but wonder why people in this neighborhood can create so many new ideas and innovative products.
With this question in mind, I toured the GoogleCampus in Mountain View, CA today. The Campus is as nice and as “open” as what many business journals and case studies describe --- it provides great and flexible work environments with free workout facilities, free food and drink (even to visitors), childcare service (with a fee), and etc. It may seem to many visitors like me that there are “no disciplines” in this place. Yet, Google has introduced a large number of successful products and services.
Many scholarly discussions contribute Google’s success to the company’s “exploratory culture.” For example, employees in Google have the options of allocating 20% - 30% of their work time in a collaborative or innovative project of their choice. Different from Google, many companies set rules and boundaries for employees so that they can control a more efficient work environment for standardized operations.
In a business standpoint, what is the art of controlling efficient operations and promoting the freedom of thinking? As an employee, would you feel more motivated to work or become less efficient if a company allows you to plan your own schedule and career? How so?