8.6. FABLED WORKPLACE

Fortune is just one of several publications to have rated Google number one on its list of best places to work.

Google has become the world's employer of choice, the mark of a new and desired work environment, and the ideal against which other companies are measured. And why not? Despite the liberal sharing of profits and a slowdown in the world economy, Google continues to do interesting work and make money.

Depending on the office location, the company provides laundry equipment for all those blue jeans and t-shirts. Employees can get haircuts, have the oil changed in their cars, and get workouts within a quick walk from their desks. There are massages, volleyball courts, swimming pools, and food—lots of food. Google even has its own cricket club at its office in Hyderabad, India.

Dressing casually is almost a requirement at Google. Most workers, including those in France and Ireland, wear blue jeans to work. Despite the casual atmosphere, Eric Schmidt says that the rule is, workers must at least wear something. The style is best described as "disheveled student."[]

Google takes pride in its Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) such as Google Women Engineers, Black Google Network, and even Gayglers. Gayglers include the company's GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transsexual) employees. "Google's ERGs," writes the company on its website, "create networks within the company that reach across functional and national boundaries to strengthen the company's retention ...

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