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Work Rules!
Cover of Work Rules!
Work Rules!
Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead
Borrow Borrow Borrow
From the visionary head of Google's innovative People Operations comes a groundbreaking inquiry into the philosophy of work-and a blueprint for attracting the most spectacular talent to your business and ensuring that they succeed.
"We spend more time working than doing anything else in life. It's not right that the experience of work should be so demotivating and dehumanizing." So says Laszlo Bock, former head of People Operations at the company that transformed how the world interacts with knowledge.
This insight is the heart of Work Rules!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto that offers lessons including:
  • Take away managers' power over employees
  • Learn from your best employees-and your worst
  • Hire only people who are smarter than you are, no matter how long it takes to find them
  • Pay unfairly (it's more fair!)
  • Don't trust your gut: Use data to predict and shape the future
  • Default to open-be transparent and welcome feedback
  • If you're comfortable with the amount of freedom you've given your employees, you haven't gone far enough.

  • Drawing on the latest research in behavioral economics and a profound grasp of human psychology, Work Rules! also provides teaching examples from a range of industries-including lauded companies that happen to be hideous places to work and little-known companies that achieve spectacular results by valuing and listening to their employees. Bock takes us inside one of history's most explosively successful businesses to reveal why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work in the world, distilling 15 years of intensive worker R&D into principles that are easy to put into action, whether you're a team of one or a team of thousands.
    Work Rules! shows how to strike a balance between creativity and structure, leading to success you can measure in quality of life as well as market share. Read it to build a better company from within rather than from above; read it to reawaken your joy in what you do.
    From the visionary head of Google's innovative People Operations comes a groundbreaking inquiry into the philosophy of work-and a blueprint for attracting the most spectacular talent to your business and ensuring that they succeed.
    "We spend more time working than doing anything else in life. It's not right that the experience of work should be so demotivating and dehumanizing." So says Laszlo Bock, former head of People Operations at the company that transformed how the world interacts with knowledge.
    This insight is the heart of Work Rules!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto that offers lessons including:
  • Take away managers' power over employees
  • Learn from your best employees-and your worst
  • Hire only people who are smarter than you are, no matter how long it takes to find them
  • Pay unfairly (it's more fair!)
  • Don't trust your gut: Use data to predict and shape the future
  • Default to open-be transparent and welcome feedback
  • If you're comfortable with the amount of freedom you've given your employees, you haven't gone far enough.

  • Drawing on the latest research in behavioral economics and a profound grasp of human psychology, Work Rules! also provides teaching examples from a range of industries-including lauded companies that happen to be hideous places to work and little-known companies that achieve spectacular results by valuing and listening to their employees. Bock takes us inside one of history's most explosively successful businesses to reveal why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work in the world, distilling 15 years of intensive worker R&D into principles that are easy to put into action, whether you're a team of one or a team of thousands.
    Work Rules! shows how to strike a balance between creativity and structure, leading to success you can measure in quality of life as well as market share. Read it to build a better company from within rather than from above; read it to reawaken your joy in what you do.
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    About the Author-
    • Laszlo Bock led Google's people function, responsible for attracting, developing, retaining, and delighting "Googlers." Bock's earlier experience spans executive roles at the General Electric Company, management consulting at McKinsey & Company, start-ups, non-profits, and acting.
      During Bock's tenure, Google was named the Best Company to Work For more than thirty times around the world and received more than 100 awards as an employer of choice. In 2010, he was named Human Resources Executive of the Year by Human Resources Executive magazine.
    Reviews-
    • Publisher's Weekly

      January 19, 2015
      Bock, Google’s head of people operations, debuts with a book about how Google hires and manages its employees. Most people know about the company’s free lunches and shuttle services, but, according to him, there is more behind Google’s five-time Fortune ranking as “Best Company to Work For.” The company aims to “keep people in an environment of freedom, creativity, and play.” However, there are rules underlying this culture, and values underlying these rules, to each of which Bock devotes one of the book’s 14 chapters. Its bedrock is trust in the fundamental goodness of people. Some rules are easier to accept than others. For example, “given limited resources, invest your HR dollars first in recruiting.” Less obvious is, “Swallow hard and pay unfairly.” No matter the rule, however, its explanation is thorough. Regarding pay, Bock cites a “power law distribution” that proves “your best people are better than you think, and worth more than you pay them.” This book is for those who are curious about Google, but especially for business leaders, all of whom, according to Bock, would benefit from adopting these rules themselves. Anecdotes about Google’s founding and history mingle with discussions of management theory, psychology, and behavioral economics to create a fascinating and accessible read. Agent: Amanda Urban, ICM.

    • Kirkus

      January 15, 2015
      The head of "People Operations" at Google discusses how the company grew into a world leader in its field and why economics was not necessarily the primary driver of its development.Bock's account of the company's origin and growth challenges traditional top-down business models based on monetary incentives and bonuses to mobilize and motivate employees in pursuit of corporate goals. As the author tells it, "Googlers" have built a self-replicating culture of continuous innovation and improvement, from the eponymous search engine to Android phones and operating system and self-driving cars. Trust is at the company's core. Each of their highly qualified employees is free to contribute their best and help others solve problems, transparently, with research supported by rigorously tested data. "Inside Google," writes the author, "we don't have a lot of rule books and policy manuals." Nonetheless, Bock offers his own interpretation in the form of 10 work rules that can help transform a workplace into a "high freedom environment." These include giving your own work meaning, focusing on turning overperformers into teachers and working with underachievers to do better, not confusing development with managing performance, and being both frugal and generous. Bock insists that "culture eats strategy for breakfast," and he dismisses the "up or out model of management" associated with former GE head Jack Welch-this scheme rigorously ranks workers annually and dumps the bottom 10 percent. As Bock shows, Google couldn't afford the luxury of wasting one of its largest investments: the associates. Compensation, promotion policy, management practices and performance management are all designed to foster associates' contributions to building a "learning institution." A perfect example is Google, writes the author, which is "twenty five times" more exclusive than Harvard and "profoundly suspicious of power." An intriguing profile of an innovative company that continues to shake up the world.

      COPYRIGHT(2015) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

    • Library Journal

      November 15, 2014
      Billed as "Lean In" for every manager, this is good guidance from the head of Google's innovative People Operations, who wants to show companies how to attract and keep the best managers. His tips might unsettle: take away managers' power over employees, pay unfairly, and trust data (not your gut) to predict and shape the future. With a 200,000-copy first printing.

      Copyright 2014 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead
    Laszlo Bock
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