Notes from book Work Rules by Laszlo Bock
Having a mission that matters is super important.
- people need to know that by heart
- aspirational, inspirational
- transform to a culture of excellence – invest in a process for hiring great people
- pay people unfairly - give people the share of their remarkable value they created
- decision making
- explain how decision are made and why
- make sure everyone is heart - seek them out
- set a deadline by when you want to decide
- brake the tie and
- expect commitment from everyone in the team
- at Google somehow brings to mind the idea of personal freedom, or working at your best
- Laszlo Bock, the head of People Operation
Chapter 1: The secret to Google’s culture is its mission, transparency and voice. Source
- mission is simple and powerful: “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
- profound mission because firstly, it gives moral, rather than commercial meaning
- Google’s successful culture is its transparency.
- CEO updates the whole company on the past week and carves out time afterward for a 30 minute Q&A session
Chapter 2: Hire the best people by looking beyond their degrees and focusing on the right kind of training. Source
- exceptional employee: hire the best or train the average. As you may already have guessed, Google does the former.
- looking for candidates who showed resilience and the ability to overcome obstacles.
- hire someone who was better than you, and to seek out those who can make everyone around them more successful.
Chapter 3: Let your people – with the help of data – run the show. Source
- do as Google does, liquidate status symbols and reduce bureaucratic hierarchy.
- there are only four levels in the hierarchy: individual contributor, manager, director and vice president.
- So how do you make the best decisions? Use data, not managerial opinion. That way decision-making is transparent and less biased. Thus, one of Google’s core principles is “Don’t politick. Use data.”
- properly managed with data and open discussion, a power handover to employees is incredibly effective, resulting in the implementation of the best ideas
Chapter 4: Both your best and worst employees represent opportunities for your company – seize them! Source
- They place outstanding performers under the microscope and help out those who need to make improvements.
- high performance is dependent on context
- studying other companies’ best practices won’t help
- study their best employees using an internal research team, PiLab or People and Innovation Lab.
- showed how a great manager is critical for top engineer performance
- below average performance is the result of lack of skill or motivation
- Google regularly identifies the bottom five percent of employees and offers them training, or tries to fit them into a more appropriate role within the company.
Chapter 5: Stop wasting resources on bad training, and use the best teachers within your own company. Source
- the training is run by the wrong people, is sloppily designed, too general, or doesn’t get analyzed in a way that measures effectiveness.
- Training should deliver specific information that people will retain
- Anders Ericsson shows that the best way to master a skill is to split the work into smaller tasks and aim for a specific improvement in one of these small tasks through repetition, feedback and correction.
- the best way to measure training isn’t by time or money spent, but through an improvement in behavior.
- trainer for sales representatives, it seeks out the best sales manager with the maximum amount of total sales and asks them to instruct lower performing sales representatives.
- it also creates a more close-knit community.
Chapter 6: Sometimes Google rewards failure and pays people unfairly. Why? Source
- Bill Gates reportedly said that a fantastic coder is worth 10,000 times more than an average coder.
- more effective ways to retain employees: offer experience rather than money.
- Their mistake was rewarding with money instead of experiences, like a dinner for two or a team trip to Hawaii.
Chapter 7: Google confronts the dark side of its culture head on. Source
- CEO Larry Page is responsible for the annual spring clean where he discontinues some products that are waning, don’t have great market prospects, or are being outperformed by others.