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How Google won the employee engagement race

By | OurOwnStartup Team

Why does everyone want to work at Google? What makes them this huge talent magnet that the world’s best and brightest apply in droves every year?

Coolness Quotient

The company has a legendary reputation for “cool”. And cool counts for a lot, especially with the latest generation of employees, the “millennials”. This is the ultra-connected, “generation me” who lives and breathes social media. Coolness seems to be the secret path to their hearts and fun is the seat of their motivation. So what makes a company trendy and hip enough to attract these guys?

Is it free, organic food? The futuristic bathrooms, outdoor mini pools, bowling alleys, and slides? Of course, all of this makes for a fun workplace but there’s more to it than just toys. Scratch the surface and you’ll understand that most of what makes Google’s culture work is free. But free does not mean easy. It takes consistent effort and honesty for a company to maintain the levels of employee happiness and motivation for as long as Google has.

Here’s a quick overview of the things they do right at Google and as talent managers what we can learn from them.

Purpose and Meaning

Employees, especially the ones you want – the passionate, engaged lot – want more today than just gross pay and perks. And contrary to popular opinion millennials are much more concerned with meaningful work than boomers or gen-Xers. They want to do well by doing good. The logic is clear for them – we spend more time working than we do on almost any other activity in our lives. All that time must come to mean something more than just paying the bills.

At Google, they seem to be honestly trying to make the world a better place and in many ways they already have. They’ve certainly made the world flatter by bridging information inequality. Such a translation of a company’s mission into something real and tangible has a huge effect on employees’ perception.

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