Ogling at Google, obervations and afterthoughts from last week’s class visit to New York’s own part of the powerhouse
This comes from the notes I messily scribbled while we ate lunch. Adriana wanted us to make our observations in one of the following areas things, tactics or people… my observations became a combination of things and people but I realize from these I could also list tactics.
Things I noticed from our entrance to our lunch on the engineering floor:
- Those working security were black or Hispanic
**Egineering floor lunch room***
- majority white males who look to be 22 and up and are majority dressed casual (sneaker, t shirt and jeans)
- women appear to be slightly older, 25 and up and are dressed more formally (dressy boots, slacks, knee length shirts and button-downs or semi-dressy tops that are not t-shirts)
- of the population that is not white and male it is most dominatly Asian or Indian
- Men’s shoes: Vans, Nike’s, Converse, Asics. Majority sneakers, a few loafers and two boots
- Women’s shoes: Frye, Michael Kors. Majority above the ankle and below the knee boots, followed by heels and a scare amount of sneakers.
Random stuff I wouldn’t expect to find in an office setting:
- massage rooms
- LEGOS and LEGO area
- scooter return spot
- medicine balls
- video games
- more workout equipment
- palm tree umbrellas for cubicle desks
- New York street signs/locations for the name of each office and section of the greater floor
- lots of wallpaper/random spots of color and designed display (old computer display, bringing it back to the old clunkers)
- full salad bar (make your own
- full sandwich bar (make your own)
- dessert bar: banana pudding stuff, pomegranate yogurt parfait, cookies, coffee
- sparkling water, plain water
- roast pork
- fruit: apples, bananas, figs
- soup: clam chowder, chicken noodle, wild rice
- Kosher area
- five types of bread
- Drink area: apple juice, soda options, Sencha energy shot
Google to me is like the real life version of the Willy Wonka Chocolate factory. There’s a lot that seems placed for comfort and entertainment. As a class we discussed how having all the food options right there and for three would limit people from taking their lunch hour somewhere else and increase productivity. The lunch room conveniently has to-go-container and there are 3 cafeterias (I thought the one we ate in was a dream come true, apparently it wasn’t the biggest). There are a number of different areas where it seems one could become distracted like the game room areas where there are huge TVs and video games, or event the workout areas, yet once again if people have a space where they can relax for a minute perhaps they will be more inclined to come back to their work. Productivity seems to be also supported by the medicine balls as sitting in a chair in front of the computer all day is supposed to be murder for your spine.
The most interesting observations I made were about people; even though Google looks like a total fun house, socially it looks like I would expect other offices to: mostly white and male and being in the computer business, outside the white male domain you have Asian and Indian male. It was nice to see younger faces, but the pressure to hold your own as women in the corporate world seemed echoed by the way women dressed as opposed to men; more formally, dressed to impress.