Since 2001, Schmidt and Google’s founders Page and Sergey Brin have together led the successful growth at Google. Schmidt’s experience in business management coupled with the techie founders’ understanding of the newer generations has proven effective. Pioneering what Fast Company’s Bruce Nussbaum calls B-I Leadership or Bi-Generational, Boomer, Gen-X and Gen-Y management, Google’s leadership understands the lives, the values, and the aspirations of the younger generations and not just as consumers.
Google’s repeated inclusion in Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Places to Work is a testament to its leadership’s success. The search giant is famous for its laundry list of perks including free food, a climbing wall, and free laundry. Doubtful that too many of these perks were dreamed up by a traditional “mature” CEO. But the perks aren’t aimed at just the employees, one of the most covenanted perks at Google is that developers can spend up to 20% of their time working on off-budget, out-of-scope projects. These projects can often be traced back to Google’s newly launched product offerings. Making perks work for Google too, as they have designed a strategy that includes making work fun.
In the extraordinary complexity of today’s business world, companies strive to change their business models keeping up with the ever-changing lives of their consumers. But what about the leadership practices within the corporations? How can companies design internal practices that continually engage, challenge, and reward their most valuable creative assets? When hierarchy no longer serves as motivation for its employees what will companies do? Perhaps Google can provide some guidance.