4 Workplace Culture Secrets to Steal From Google

It's like that one girl — we'll call her Jackie — in high school that was voted most likely to achieve, appointed student body president, named prom queen, and valedictorian. You hated her, but you also wanted to be just like her. You wondered what it was about Jackie that made her so awesome. She seems nice, but there must be something else going on under the surface.

Google Perks and Benefits

Now imagine that Jackie as a company, and that company is Google. Making all other corporate heads green with envy, Google was named most attractive employer by Universum for, like, the zillionth time in a row. Voted "most awesome" is quite a badge of honor, since it makes top talent claw, bite, scratch, and otherwise climb over each other to work for you. And it's working — Google gets over two million applications a year. It's like if Jackie got asked out on a date by every boy on campus. And she probably did.

I'm not bitter, I swear.

You may currently be a workforce of one, but that doesn't mean you can't create a culture you've always wanted in an employer. And shoot, you might as well start now so that when your employee base expands, you'll be the start-up everybody wants to have listed on their Linkedin account. Below, a few culture and benefit ideas to steal from The Goog.

  • Make Yourself Comfortable — Google has often said that it treats its employees like family, so it makes the comforts of home (albeit a fancy home) available to them at the office. Healthy lunches, daycare and dogsitting services, medical care, dry-cleaning, ergonomic workstations, bikes, fitness centers, and frequent social gatherings ensure hard-working employees are comfortable and well taken care of.
  • Treat Yourself — Google offers massages on campus to their employees. Massage may seem like an extravagance, but the truth is, your body takes on a ton of stress even without you "feeling" stressed out. Pounding away at a keyboard all day may not seem all that significant, but you're holding a position that isn't natural. Keeping your body aligned, your blood flowing, and muscles pliable is extremely important for your health. "Treating yourself" (it's not really a treat, it should be something you get as often as a haircut) to a massage will reduce muscle strain, body aches, even headaches. Just do it.

There's lots more to learn after the break!

  • Remove Barriers — The famous perks at Google (massages, lap pools, free food, incredible family benefits) are a way for the company to — in its words — "remove barriers" so that you can focus 100% on the job at hand. As a side-hustling solopreneur, that's an impossible task, but you can make things easier by getting organized. Plan your content and marketing strategies ahead of time. Block out hours in your day for certain tasks. Automate as much as possible.
  • Be Open to New Ideas — At Google, employees are encouraged to spend 20 percent of their time on a passion project of their choosing, which creates a culture of new ideas that are constantly being beta tested in Google Labs. Some of the best ideas have come from these passion projects, including Gmail and Google News. Can you imagine life without Gmail? I can't. Try taking 20 percent of your time to daydream, brainstorm, invent, and noodle over projects that you've always wanted to pull off for your budding company, but didn't think you had the time, resources, or balls to pull off. Who knows — it could be the idea that catapults your company from a small side-gig to the heart-exploding, smile-inducing, spirit-lifing, passion-fueled full-time job you always wanted. And guess what — you created it.

What kind of company perks would you offer to future employees? What benefits would benefit you now? Share your ideas in the comments!

Source: Flickr user danielmorris