What’s So Good About Google?

Posted by Chuck Kocher
On December 29, 2014

What'sSoGoodAboutGoogleApparently people think that Google is a pretty great place to work. Both Glass Door and Fortune picked the Mountain View, California high-tech company as the best place to work in 2014. So what’s so good about Google?

Well, nothing succeeds like success, and Google’s stock went north of $1,000 in 2013. Why does that matter? It makes a difference because every single employee is also a Google stockholder. That means if you share in the work—you also share in the benefits. The impact of employees who truly feel ownership in the company can’t be denied. And with Google, “ownership” means more than shared pride in a job well done. It means actual ownership—and sharing the benefits that come with that.

Another thing that matters to employees is that Google is bigger than just the work they do in the office. The company encourages involvement in the community—and they put their money where their mouth is, donating $5- for every five hours employees spend volunteering. And this attitude comes all the way from the top. CEO Larry Page urged employees to be “audacious” in their philanthropic efforts.

The company offers all kinds of perks—and they pay well. They believe it’s not enough to give employees “affirmation.” They provide financial compensation that demonstrates their appreciation.

And what’s the outcome of this kind of treatment? One employee summed it up by saying that “the company attracts some of the best talent and best people to work with in the world, which is the most important bit.”

It might be easy to look at the folks from Mountain View and think: “Sure their employees are happy. They work in a sexy industry (high tech) that’s doing well.” But consider that Google competes for employees with companies such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, all of which (at least in Glass Door’s survey) dropped significantly this year as “great places to work” (Twitter didn’t even make the top 50!).

In short, it’s not just about the industry. It’s about treating people well and finding out what’s important to them.

Most of us can’t compete with Google when it comes to resources and the ability to offer certain benefits to employees. But that doesn’t mean we can’t match their spirit and intent. If you say, “Our people are our most important asset,” what do you actually do to back that up? Do your employees know how much they mean to you?

The employees at Google do.