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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?

Comments

  1. I absolutely enjoyed reading and hope you keep updating it frequently! I absolutely liked the abstraction you accept aloft here. It is actual accessible and advantageous one.

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  2. I think that you pose a great point in the blog entry and some good questions. I believe that, from a business standpoint, it may be a little scary to take on an operation system such as the one Google has, especially if the manager is not a member of this fast and technology based generation entering the workforce. I do believe, however, that Google's approach to a free environment is a smart one. I feel as though in a job where I can set my own schedule and work on my own time, I would be far more productive than in the hours I am being "forced" to work in a more strict environment. The idea that creativity is constantly flowing in such a corporation and that employees can literally play with their ideas means that work can be fun and, in my opinion, fosters a greater desire to work.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. I can relate to what you said above. I can only expect that Google can effectively assess employees performance (or the outputs) based on their inputs. Employees are "motivated" to keep producing good work in a flexible schedule. Otherwise, they will be replaced with somebody else who can actually produce outcomes.

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  3. This article relates directly to the "Millennial" video that we watched in class. The new generations of employers are self-centered and Google has recognized that and allowed this generation to work in an untraditional work atmosphere and clearly it has paid off on both ends of the spectrum. Google employers are happy and the Google business is extremely successful.

    By allowing these young adults to choose their hours, "play" a bit at work and offering services that many other traditional corporations do not offer, they are making their employees happy and when employees enjoy their job, they like coming to work and actually working!

    Some of my best ideas often come when I'm not doing homework. I'm usually most inspired running, walking, or sometimes even watching TV. Once I think of something, I can't wait to do it and usually I use my time 10 times more efficiently than when I'm uninspired sitting at a desk trying to do something.

    I hope that the company I work for in the future recognizes the new generational ways of thinking just as Google has done, and tries incorporating it into the job and workplace.

    Marlei Simon

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  4. I think we need to bring more ideas for this purpose. Involvement of young people can be handy in this regard. I am happy to find a good post here. Thank you..

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  5. I imagine that this type of working environment is very appealing to the younger generation who are use to thinking a little more out of the box than that of earlier generations. Google certainly provides a lot of perks that are especially well suited for those with a multi-tasking,creative,free thinking,entrepreneurial type of spirit. That said I believe that a person employed here would have to be very self disciplined and be able to apply their own self imposed limits in order to be achieve success. Not all people perform well in this environment and require a more structured atmosphere to be productive. Different people-Different needs. This reminds me somewhat of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs; that lower needs must be satisfied before higher needs can be satisfied resulting in self actualization. It certainly seems that working at Google would allow you to cover many of these needs (food,drink,safe environment for them as well as their children,socialization,self esteem building opportunities,planning your own schedule,etc.) It reads like a dream job, offering the best in work-life balance while at the same time encouraging creativity, security, and job success. Yeah Google!

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