Basing on the fact that Google is a worldwide diversified company, it has a regular operational structure with special managers depending on the value chain activities. The managerial positions are subdivided into special regions of interest that helps the company manage its activities. There are other subdivisions depending on the geographical location of the small businesses and the product market (Hill and Jones 2001, p. 33). This type of management secures controlled central planning in the company; similar approach is common for other big companies in order to ensure small business units are flexible and innovative. The company management structure is illustrated below:
The company has informal commercial slogan, Dont be evil first put forward by Paul Buchheit who launched Gmail. This, he said was a jab at other companies who at that time were very exploitative of their customers. The slogan is in line with the long term vision of the company: to make more money than everyone thinks is possible by re-organizing information. The name of the company is derived from an arithmetical term GOOGOL: 1 followed by 100 zeros which represents of the companys 300 year vision (Hill and Jones 2001, p. 34). A number of some of unique features which distinguish Google from the rest of American based companies. These are advantages to the company; first, it has helped the company to keep a fairly different culture through the past two decades. It is instrumental towards achieving the companys vision and keeping all stakeholders happy with the use of consistent communication. Secondly, the management style and culture at Google have helped the company to keep growing and expanding its markets.
The working rule of the company is The 70/20/10 Rule which allows its employees to spend 70% of their time on the main business, 20% on related tasks and 10% on other newer businesses (Hill and Jones 2001, p. 39). This rule has a good return on how much the company has invested since about half of the companys new products come from free time. This is arguably one of the main contributors to innovation in the company to feature related businesses like Google News and Google Earth, and newer ventures like the free wireless initiative among others. The advantage is growth of business and the reward is more profitability. The third advantage Google corporate culture is efficiency in employee management and treatment. The company is largely referred to as the best in terms of employee management. In 2007 and 2008, the company was ranked top on the list of companies that employees would like to work for by Fortune Magazine. That was albeit due to existence of such maxims as, You can be serious without a suit. This has a big reputation on the companys image enabling it to attract high class professionals in management positions (Schein 2009, p. 10). Professionalism of employees enables the company to stay innovative. It sums to good returns and expansions of markets as well as maintaining a good reputation in view of the competitive business world.
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In as much as the system gives a lot of advantages, there are also a few disadvantages which mainly stem from diseconomies of large scale operations. First, there is the problem of increased expenditure to cater for the ever growing state of the company businesses. The expenses are in such areas as remuneration to employees which attracted some criticism of the company during the past few years. The company was said to pay its employees below the industrial minimum which was apparently very negatively impacting considering the high standards of living in the Silicon Valley area. As countermove, the company increased the wages of its employees to become one of the best in America. Another challenge faced from growth is the problem of trying to maintain its image. The company has to work hard at keeping their open culture best not to Be evil like other companies which have tried to keep monopolistic powers with an aim of exploiting customers (Schein 2009, p. 15).
Comparison between Google Management Style and Conventional Management Styles
In view of modern business environments, the world is changing and seeking innovations towards managing economic situation and Google is no exception. This analysis explores the main differences between the traditional management styles and that which Google has adopted. First, traditional leaders in the world of business have the notion that their power comes from their position of authority. However, the new approach at Google recognizes power as a collective teamwork through encouraging collective participation (Collins, Emsell and Haydon 2011, p. 107). The advantage of this approach is effective decision making, sourcing advice from several stakeholders. Secondly, traditional leaders crave the ability to posses all information, as a result of power, with the belief that knowledge is power. They release only on the Need to Know basis. Google, embracing collaborative management approach believes in information sharing. It has enabled the employees of the company to positively contribute towards innovativeness of the company through sharing information on project work, which the company undertakes.
The company has ensured all its employees are well informed on the through training on creative approaches to business. Thirdly, Google believes in team work in terms of idea generation where all employees are given equal chances to participate in formulation of ideas for growth of the company in line with creativity and innovation to product launching through its culture and slogans (Schein 2009, p. 18). It has enabled the company to tower above the rest of its competitors who have not adopted such policies. On the contrary, traditional managers believe that ideas can only be generated by those in power and do not give chance to people not in management to participate in any idea generation programs. Such move limits growth because the ideas to growth originate only from a few individuals and may not be as effective as they would have been if they had been sourced from a team (Collins, Emsell and Haydon 2011, p. 109).
Another difference between these two systems of management is the effectiveness of problem management and solving. Traditional managers affirm that solutions are delivered to team members and originate from those in management positions. Decision making is the responsibility of management which are soon approved and conclusions made. However, Google embraces teamwork in terms of decision making to ensure that only best solutions are reached. The fifth difference comes in the resource allocation to project work. Google believes and has a high sense of trust in its employees, delivers the required resources early enough so that the workers can not strain in trying to accomplish the mission of the project. This has allowed the company projects to carry on more rapidly. As a result, there is faster realization of outcome unlike in traditional practices where resource allocation takes too long due to lack of trust in the employees (Collins, Emsell and Haydon 2011, p. 112). The resources are only delivered when it deems necessary crippling project development and subsequently delaying outcome, at times projects proceeding without the required resources. The sixth difference is in the rules and regulations where traditional managers believe that all employees are supposed to stick to strict rules and regulations. They are not to deviate from their roles and responsibilities due to penalties put against them. This hinders innovation to a large extent and suppresses development. Google has a collaborative management system that encourages works to work together within the specified rules and regulations. This is one of the main strengths of the working staff at the company as it enhances sharing of ideas of growth of the company.
The seventh difference comes in resolution of issues. Google utilizes a system identifies the root cause of problems in trying to deal with issues preventing a possibility of recurrence of such problems in future. It is however, different with the conventional systems of management which deals with individuals in times of resolving of issues. These lead to more conflict and the threat of repetition of the same in future. It also leads to managers firing back at employees creating a difficult working environment. The last difference is in how managers influence employee performance and feedback. Traditional managers tend to practice semi-annual and annual analysis of employees performance and victimising them in the event of a mal-performance, negatively impacting on their morale (Hill and Jones 2001, p. 42). Google being collaborative in the business world has its management working closely with the rest of the staff evaluating their performance on a daily basis encouraging positive criticism and boosting the morale of the workers instead of victimizing them at the end. Managers keep sharing knowledge with the rest of employees and building a sense of belonging to each team member.
Employee Motivation at Google based on Motivation Theory
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Companies today are always looking for new ways and approaches to recruit well talented, retain the best, and find creative ways to motivate workers for maximum output. The theory behind the way managers can efficiently motivate and reward employees does back to the turn of the century. Among such companies is Google Inc., which is leading the way to restructure its management system to enable employees, streamline innovative ideas that unveil blockbuster new products (Schein 2009, p. 23). For instance, Google Inc. is rewarding its employees with perks such as onsite swimming pools, giving an opportunity to employees to bring their pets like dogs to work, offer on site child care, and all the free food needed by workers. The company offers relaxed working environments in which case group thinking is encouraged and teamwork is at the centre of inventing the next product that could transform the next generation. A number of theories of motivation are put into consideration in the event of motivating employees. The theories are in line with the Hawthorne studies conducted in the early nineteenth century.
According to Hawthorne, the most important aspect of the study was how managers can motivate workers to work effectively, with quality output the maximum rate of return on investment. Based on the Hawthorne studies, there is something beyond pay incentive that can improve employees results in a work group. As a result, leaders should find ways to motivate and reward their workers apart from the reconceptualised incentives of being employed and having a salary. Main theories of motivation include: Maslows hierarchy of needs, Fredrick Herzbergs two factory theory, and Davids McClellands theory of needs (Schein 2009, p. 25).
With regard to Maslows Hierarchy of Needs, it is assumed that needs are arranged in a pyramid with psychological needs at the lowest-level and self-actualization needs at the top. As a result, Maslow proposes that people get satisfied when they move systematically up the hierarchy ladder. This implies that people are motivated based on which hierarchy they are in. In this case, an employee who is homeless cannot be motivated by the social status level, but through the ability to acquire food and shelter. Therefore, people have different levels of needs in every area, and the levels determine their behaviour. According to Maslow, employees will not be motivated to produce the best output unless their basic needs are attained (Skyrme 2007, p. 66). At Google Inc, employees are motivated at the basic level through provision of off-time to spend with their families so that the effects of mandatory overtime that tend to demoralise their social security need are avoided.
On the contrary, Herzberg deviates slightly from Maslows theory in his two-factor theory. He begins by asking the question, What really motivates someone. Thereafter, he creates a content model called the two-factor theory of motivation. In the theory, he looks at dissatisfiers and satisfiers, or otherwise the hygiene motivators. These are also called extrinsic-intrinsic factors. According to Herzbergs theory, dissatisfiers-satisfiers describe the salary, work environment and company regulations. Motivation factors are intrinsic and people get satisfied based on motivations like attainment incentives, more significant responsibility and growth (Skyrme 2007, p. 71). Herzbergs theory states that managers should provide hygiene factors to reduce on the level of dissatisfaction among employees. In addition, they have to provide factors intrinsic to the job itself so that employees remain satisfied with their work. This works well to reduce low performance, turnover and low morale through addition of both hygiene factors and motivators. Furthermore, Herzberg encourages managers to address employees differently since they have different ways in which they can be motivated. This is an area that scores the highest according to what happens at Google Inc. The company has a flexible environment in which employees can have their social life moving on at the place of work and at the same time get the best salary (Collins, Emsell and Haydon 2011, p. 131).
In the contemporary environment, the bottom line of Google Inc. is to remain profitable in the long term through attracting top talents, retaining best employees and motivating the best skills for maximum performance. Google Inc. was ranked as the best company in the US by Fortune Magazine, to work in 2009. The company has attained a top-5 position through provision of creative rewards, flexibility and the chance to follow ideas that challenge the status quo and shatter structures in the social environment. The company CEO, Erin Schmitt, embraces the fun is good slogan and asserts that they create a company around the notion that work has to be challenging. Employees remain a priority by offering a unique environment at a workplace. CEOs say that they realise and celebrate the fact that the employees have different needs and that the diversity requires management of the company to be flexible. As a result, support to employees has to be individualised. Priority of Google Inc. is to provide a customable framework that can be geared to particular needs of each employee, regardless of whether they enjoy ice climbing in Alaska, need to retire at 40 years of age or have a plan to adopt children. Virtually every need of employees is accommodated ate Google Inc. In the provision of benefits and incentives, the company focuses on stripping away what may interfere with employees efficiency at work (Skyrme 2007, p. 66). Research indicates that Google Inc offers a standard fringe benefits package, in addition to first-class dining facilities, laundry rooms, gyms, haircuts, massage rooms and car washes among other facilities. This embraces both Maslows hierarchy of needs theory and Herzbergs two-factor theory.
Importance of Teams and Team-building at Google
Every successful corporation has a desire to invest in things that matter and reap maximum returns on investment. It is a desire in each business person to create organisations that they believe in. The main function of a team work motivation is to be able to endure the sacrifice, risk and adventure what commitment involves. Universal corporations that strive for competitive advantage increasingly incorporate high-performance teams to unveil complex business strategies (Beam 2012, p. 16).
There are many benefits and advantages attached to teamwork. The main benefits entail diversity of ideas, knowledge and tools contributed by members of the team, as well as amity among team members. High-performance teams exhibit cohesion, which is a measure of attraction of the team to its members. Members in high cohesive teams are usually more cooperative and effective in attaining the objectives they set for themselves and the entire company (Bishop, Scott and Burroughs 2000, p. 42). Whenever there is no cohesion in a team working surrounding is likely to impact on the team performance as a result of unnecessary distress and tension among members of the group. Hence, collaboration through cohesion in the place of work could significantly raise profitability of the company.
Through Google Inc. research team, the company realised that when people work alone, it is difficult to receive continuous design feedback. It reduces output quality in the corporation. Google management acknowledges the fact that a tight feedback is crucial in attaining a productive state of flow. The earlier the company gets feedback from clients and employees, the less likely time is wasted in going the wrong way of carrying out activities. The management will correct the company course of action in good time. According to the profile at Google, in terms of software development, it is critically easier for a person to review the codes and provide feedback if they are working on the same team and have something in common when it comes to project development(Bishop, Scott and Burroughs 2000, p. 47).
Furthermore, working alone reduces possibility of learning since the wrong thing done may be assumed to be right and may be carried out repeatedly to a level of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results (Bishop, Scott and Burroughs 2000, p. 49). Google believes in teamwork because it increases the bus factor for any project. This refers to the number of members in the team that can be affected before the project is completed. Teamwork is paramount in reducing incomprehensible and undocumented shortcuts taken by one person working alone, and as such, forces members of the team to spread knowledge and do things in a way that others can learn.
The last thing of building teams and working as a team is that it increases accountability. Each member is assigned a specific area to deal with and in any case if things go wrong, there is an individual to be answerable. In the event a person works with others that they respect and would not want to let them down, he or she will be motivated to help the team succeed. It is an area that Google Inc. has focused on to increase efficiency within the company (Bishop, Scott and Burroughs 2000, p. 55).