Creepy, or cool? Google revealed a killer new benefit for the tech giant’s employees: posthumous salaries.
The perk, which has been in place since last year, offers the company’s 34,000 employees (or, rather, their next of kin) half their salary every year for a decade after they die. Stocks are vested immediately, and children of bygone Googlers will receive $1,000 a year until they are 19 — or 23 if they are full-time students.
“There is, of course, research that show employee benefit programs like ours can improve retention, and appear to improve performance on some level,” Bock told Forbes. “But it turns out that the reason we’re doing these things for employees is not because it’s important to the business, but simply because it’s the right thing to do. When it comes down to it, it’s better to work for a company who cares about you than a company who doesn’t.”
"Good grammar makes good business sense — and not just when it comes to hiring writers. Writing isn’t in the official job description of most people in our office. Still, we give our grammar test to everybody, including our salespeople, our operations staff, and our programmers. On the face of it, my zero tolerance approach to grammar errors might seem a little unfair. After all, grammar has nothing to do with job performance, or creativity, or intelligence, right? Wrong. If it takes someone more than 20 years to notice how to properly use “it’s,” then that’s not a learning curve I’m comfortable with. So, even in this hyper-competitive market, I will pass on a great programmer who cannot write."
What do you really do when you work from home?
New research from Citrix aims to shed light on just what people do get up to when they work from home. If you’re not familiar with Citrix, it’s a great application that lets you access all of your work files from your home computer. So they’ll have a pretty good idea of what people are doing when they work from home. […] The Citrix research doesn’t paint a great picture. It suggests that 43% of home workers watch tv or even a movie, whilst 20% like to play video games whilst ‘at work’. When not under the peer pressure of the office another 24% will have a sneaky drink or two with another 26% having a snooze.
How filters can cure information overload at work →
At some point you’ll need to filter information from your organization’s social media systems to avoid information overload. This article discusses considerations in using ”metadata” for filtering, whether implemented by algorithm or by human trial and error.
- If someone defines their filters too narrowly, they reduce the opportunity for serendipity; but if they define their filters too widely, they are back to information overload.
- Knowing how many people have read an item is a big clue to its value.
- When you look at content ratings consider that people are more comfortable giving positive ratings than negative ones, though cultural differences exist between Europe and US [article doesn’t say which way this difference goes… anybody have any ideas on that?]
- Comments indicate how interesting something is — number of commenters suggests breadth of interest and number of comments its depth.
- While the most valued content does not always come from the most senior employees, high ratings from highly ranked employees usually have more weight.
Implement an enterprise social network without adequate filtering and you risk subjecting employees to information overload. Or if they deal with it by ignoring the social network content altogether, they end up with too little information.
Only by embracing the rich vein of content metadata that a social network provides, will employees be able to find the information they need. via InfoManagement Direct
"There are only a handful of companies in existence that will have a real impact on the world and still offer their employees a real opportunity to contribute. SoundCloud is one of those companies."
The office is shrinking as tech creates workplace everywhere →
Offices traditionally use 200 to 300 square feet per worker — an average of everything from clerks’ cubicles to executive suites. By encouraging staff to work from home, getting rid of offices, even resorting to “hoteling” — workers check in when they’re in the office and get assigned a desk for the day — some companies are slashing average square footage per worker to less than 100, about the size of a one-car garage.
Working from home is on the rise nationally. In 2005, 3.6% of the 133.1 million workers ages 16 and older telecommuted, according to Census data. Five years later, 4.3% of 137 million workers did their jobs from home.
Move Over Entrepreneurs, Here Come The Intrapreneurs by David Armano →
What does Intrapreneur mean exactly?
An intrapreneur is someone who has an entrepreneurial streak in his or her DNA, but chooses to align his or her talents with a large organization in place of creating his or her own. To the classic entrepreneur this may be puzzling, but to what I think is a growing class of 21st Century “employees,” it may sound like the best of both worlds. I didn’t come up with the word “intrapreneur,” but several years ago when I struck up a conversation with an older gentleman at a train station and I described what I did for a living, he said something I’ll never forget: “Oh, you’re an intrapreneur–so was I.”
Music to Our Ears: How Headphones Changed Our World
If you are reading this on a computer, there is a 50% chance that you are wearing, or are within arm’s reach of, a pair of headphones or earbuds.
To visit a modern office place is to walk into a room with a dozen songs playing simultaneously but to hear none of them. Up to half of workers listen to music on their headphones, and the vast majority thinks it makes us better at our jobs. In survey after survey, we report with confidence that music makes us happier, better at concentrating, and more productive.
Science says we’re full of it. Listening to music hurts our ability to recall other stimuli, and any pop song — loud or soft — reduces overall performance for both extraverts and introverts. A Taiwanese study linked music with lyrics to lower scores on concentration tests for college students, and other research have shown music with words scrambles our brains’ verbal-processing skills. “As silence had the best overall performance it would still be advisable that people work in silence,” one report dryly concluded.
If headphones are so bad for productivity, why do so many people at work have headphones? And why are our bosses letting us drive ourselves to distraction?