Google Inc. is known for fostering a work environment where creativity and productivity thrive. In his recent book “Work Rules! Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead,” Laszlo Bock, Google’s senior vice president of people operations, reveals secrets about how one of the world’s most successful companies has achieved this enviable environment. He also offers insight into changing the nature of work to easily transform your team and store into a more enjoyable—and profitable—organization.
“We spend more time working than anything else,” Bock notes. “It’s not right that work be so demotivating and dehumanizing.”
The following 10 tips from the March 15, 2015, issue of Fortune magazine are adapted from Bock’s book.
1 Give your work meaning. People who find that their work has a purpose—outside of a paycheck—are happier and more productive.
2 Trust your employees. “If you believe human beings are fundamentally good, act like it,” Bock says. Give your employees a voice in how things work.
3 Hire only people who are better than you. It’s more important to find the best person for the job than to hire quickly.
4 Don’t confuse development with managing performance. If you want to know how your employees are doing, ask their co-workers, as well as their manager.
5 Focus on the two tails. Those who are doing well should be examined closely to see how they excel. For those who are not doing so well, have compassion. Chances are, they are in the wrong roles, Bock says. Help them to learn or find new roles.
6 Be frugal and generous. Most perks Google gives its employees cost little or no money, such as bringing services in-house or negotiating delivery from a local sandwich shop, he says. But the company saves its largest investments for when employees are in the greatest need—whether welcoming a new family member or paying for large medical bills.
7 Pay unfairly. Those who contribute the most should feel that they are worth more.
8 Nudge. Encourage the behavior you want by changing the environment. Knock down cubicles if you want more collaboration; share messages about the number of people volunteering if you want others to get involved.
9 Manage the rising expectations. Tell people you’ll be experimenting with new ideas before you give them a try. Nothing is bound to be 100% successful, and this will turn potential critics into supporters.
10 Enjoy! And then go back to No. 1 and start again. Building store culture isn’t a one-time effort. As you learn, you can add new ideas to try.