Management at Google
- Changes in management style since inception
Google is among the organizations that have survived the difficult economic challenges globally for more than two decades. The company’s success is attributed to its efficiency in applying management styles that motivate the employees to be more innovative and productive in their work. Over the years, the business environment has changed due to advancement in technology as well as employee expectations and consequently the company has been forced to change its management styles.
One of the management styles that the company has adopted since inception is the use of servant leadership where the interests of the employees are prioritized to those of the leaders. The management style was adopted in the mid-2000s to help complement the democratic leadership style that existed since the company’s inception (Lages, Silva & Styles, 2009). The company put the interests of the employees first by providing a working environment that suits the young generation; one that allows the workers to use company resources to experiment and develop new ideas. Through the management style, the company has been able to develop more trust with the employees as well as deeper engagements that enhance exchange of ideas.
The other change in the management style that Google has adopted is the change in the nature of the bureaucratic managerial system. Although the company has had a democratic managerial system since inception, it needed to establish bureaucratic managerial style in the company. In 2011, Google assigned specific duties and responsibilities to the managerial team to make it easy for the management team to be more accountable (Brown, 2014). However, the company was keen on ensuring that the hierarchy was only comprised by three senior positions to avoid a long chain of command that may slow down its operations. In my opinion, the company is properly managed because the managerial techniques adopted are considerate of both the company and the stakeholders. The servant leadership concept adopted by the management allows the company to reap optimum benefits from the workforce due to high motivation. The short chain of command in the hierarchy enhances accountability as well as quick decision-making, leading to high productivity of the company.
- Preparation for change
A change in the management may either have desirable or adverse impacts on the success of the company due to the different perceptions that may be developed by the employees. One of the factors that affect the success of an organization in relation to adoption of change is resistance by the workers, especially when they are not adequately prepared for upcoming changes in the company.
In the recent past, Google has changed its management structure through the alteration of the management positions held by the founders for the interest of the company and to make the executive team more accountable (Brown, 2014). The move warranted a reaction from the employees because it implied that they had to report to different individuals. Prior to making the decision, the company’s management ensured that the teams within the organization were aware of the changes and the reasons for the changes. However, some employees showed mixed reaction due to the failure by the management to involve them in the decision making process. From a management perspective, the transition of the company’s management structure was not problematic because of effective communication between the executive management and the other junior employees.
- Decision of management relating to vendors and spokespersons
To ensure that the activities in the company are not disrupted by the external forces, the company has defined policies that ensure smooth relationship with the vendors and the public through the spokesperson. The vendor policy by the company defines the actions that may lead to non-payment of delivered goods to ensure that the suppliers focus on the provision of high quality products. It also provides the necessary conditions for goods to be delivered to avoid fraudulent activities in the company. The vendors are only required to provide goods and services as per the purchase order requested in writing. The policy allows the management to effectively monitor the activities of the company and the vendors to ascertain whether there are any benefits accrued in the transactions.
In relation to the management decision about the spokesman, the company prohibits employees from leaking sensitive information to the public. The only way that the company communicates to the public is through a press release made by the CEO (Bamber, Jiang & Wang, 2010). This ensures that sensitive information about the operations of the company does not reach the competitors as it may threaten the effectiveness of the company’s success strategies. Any issues pertaining to the company vendors are communicated to the public by the company to avoid conflicting statements to the public. It is clear that the decisions by the management on the vendors and spokesperson are effective in protecting the company against interruption by third parties.
- Innovative idea that may impact the employees and clients positively
Innovation is among the aspects that determine the competitive advantage of an institution, but this is influenced by the nature of the idea. The primary aim of innovating is to reduce the operational costs that decrease a company’s productivity. In most cases, innovative ideas are brought about by the need to promote the productivity of the company through increased production units or sales volume. Such innovations do not consider the welfare of employees and the clients due to over-emphasis on increasing the company’s productivity (Brown, 2014).
For an innovative idea to have a positive impact on both the employees and the clients, it must be fascinating and at the same time cost effective. An example of an innovative idea that may benefit both parties is the development of a marketing website that would allow the clients to advertise their products and the services at a subsidized cost. The site is likely to attract many users, leading to high profitability by the clients through increased sale of their products. The employees also benefit from the increased sale by the clients as the company my react by increasing their compensation packages. The high sales volume by the clients may also act as a motivating factor to the employees as they see the company succeed through their efforts.
- Ability of Google to adapt to the changing business environment
Firms operating in the technology industry such as Google are faced with the challenge of adapting to the rapid changes brought about by advancement in technology. The survival of companies in the industry greatly depends on their ability to cope with unforeseen changes that may occur (Adger et al., 2013). Apart from the advanced technology, the other factors that may force a company to change include the social and economic development of companies, leading to change in customer demands. One of the factors that allow companies to be flexible to changes is the nature of workforce employed. For Google Company, the changes in the environment are unlikely to affect its success due the quality of employees hired and the nature of the working environment.
The company hires talented and highly skilled employees who are able to adapt to any technological changes in the environment to meet customer demands. Further, the concept of adult supervision used in the company allows the workers to work on a flexible schedule thus enhancing the creativity and innovative ability of the employees. With an innovative workforce, the company is able to cope with any changes in the market. The other essential factor that guarantees the survival of Google in the highly competitive world is financial stability. In most cases, companies incur huge amounts of capital in their efforts to adapt to changes in the environment. The variation in customer taste may imply a change in the nature of products offered and this may require huge capital outflow. Companies need funds to carry out activities such as market research, product development, sales promotion, adoption of new technologies and employee training. In 2015, the company’s annual income was 74 billion, implying that it has adequate income to fund any changes that may be required in the business environment (Carayannis, Sindakis & Walter, 2015). The company is thus ready to tackle any changes that may occur in the working environment.
Adger, W. N., Barnett, J., Brown, K., Marshall, N., & O’Brien, K. (2013). Cultural dimensions of climate change impacts and adaptation. Nature Climate Change, 3(2), 112-117.
Bamber, L. S., Jiang, J., & Wang, I. Y. (2010). What’s my style? The influence of top managers on voluntary corporate financial disclosure. The accounting review, 85(4), 1131-1162.
Brown, K. (2014). Global environmental change IA social turn for resilience?.Progress in Human Geography, 38(1), 107-117.
Carayannis, E. G., Sindakis, S., & Walter, C. (2015). Business model innovation as lever of organizational sustainability. The Journal of Technology Transfer, 40(1), 85-104.
Lages, L. F., Silva, G., & Styles, C. (2009). Relationship capabilities, quality, and innovation as determinants of export performance. Journal of International Marketing, 17(4), 47- 70.