Google Offices

Google NY on www.CourtneyPrice.com

I was lucky enough to find myself in the innovative Google offices last week while in New York, and they are beyond amazing. So cool that I took a few pictures of the must-see  public areas to share with you. I will share interesting factoids here and there, but otherwise this will be a visual tour.  Google has created a workspace revolution with a creativity level that is off the charts. They own this entire building, so they can do whatever they want with the space, making it unlike any other work environment you will ever encounter.

Google Pod on www.CourtneyPrice.com

If you saw the movie The Internship (above), don’t you wonder if these sleep pods really exist? They do. Was that office real or a movie set… Actually, I can’t answer that but I can give you a look into the New York office, which screams the same level of creativity. An eye-opening, jaw-dropping walk through the variety of environments will drive home the concept that creative environments ignite the brain…  which might make you rethink your own work habits and spaces~

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

 Google respects employee privacy. They ask visitors to as well, so you will only see what I am allowed to share.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Google employees are encouraged to work wherever they are comfortable. It is OK to leave the open plan workspaces to go be creative elsewhere. A variety of creative environments exist everywhere – in countless styles, themes, you name it. Like the above mid-century modern, which resides right next to a recreated train car. Creativity on steroids- the versatile public and private spaces embrace varied work styles.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

This hallway is a library. Neuron building enrichment is everywhere.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Gigantic Lego area, in an open space on the way to other areas…and employee masterpieces on the shelves. Creativity is not just for kids – it is encouraged for all, at any time of day.Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

 See that ladder up to the 5th floor? That’s another interesting point- not all floors are connected by elevator in this building, wrap your head around that one. Design coolness. Google can do whatever they want, so they did. Love that.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Pac-Man machines line another hallway, free of charge, and it’s ok to take a break. Can you imagine?!

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

The Google game room fosters the interactive group dynamic. Again, encouraged fun, any time of day. Teams can even meet over a game of pool if they like. Work hours are completely flexible…teams can even meet at 3am if they decide to. Google recognizes that different work habits are more productive for some than others. As long as the work gets done, hours and environment are whatever the team decides on. There is no dress code, literally, no rules. You don’t see business attire or couture walking around this place.  Employees are comfortable, relaxed and focussed. So, for all of you who feel guilty for sitting at the computer all day in your workout clothes or PJ’s… why?

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Here is the other side of the game room, with massage chairs and a privacy screen for when the professional massage therapist is there. Relaxation is encouraged. An interesting observation: one might think that an entire building full of some of the smartest people in the world might make for a stress filled hustled environment. I couldn’t help but notice how calm and relaxed employees seemed. The interior design concept clearly works. While we are here, look up at the pipes.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

The Google ceilings are fascinating, naturally- serious pipelines…

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Creative signs protect the large open-work areas from visitors. And by the way, work areas are also open to creative expression of the groups inhabiting them. There was a full open bar with various beers on tap at one of them.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Need privacy? These phone rooms with clever door transparencies are for employee use. Such a great idea to foster flexibility and variety at this level.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

More doors to transport you into a creative place of your choice. As you know, I adore cool doors

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

And creative conference room spaces.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Bring out the inner kid with provided transportation… around the building. Did Google read my post about how movement stimulates the brain?!

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

OK, lets talk about the food. Above we see the guest chef board. There are multiple cafeterias (and I just automatically downgraded the food by my use of the word “cafeteria”, perhaps I should say “food area”), cafes and snack bars, all free to the employees. Any kind of GOOD food you can imagine, they have it. The lunch I ate there was absolutely delicious.  The quality of food is impressive – Google does not cut corners on food… if you see the offerings you’ll understand why people spend so much time at work. Gourmet, healthy (or not), way better than you would find if you went out for lunch. Eat whatever you like, whenever, wherever… no need to pull out your wallet.  I could’ve checked out the food for hours. It was beautiful- and delicious. Employees claim to unfortunately get totally used to the spoiling… hard to imagine. Side note: It was cool to see some of the employees sporting Google Glasses while they ate.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

 Oh! here is a cool design feature of ONE of the food areas. See the windows? See the wall space in-between? Well, if you stand right where Sam is standing, the buildings and sky that you see on the walls between the windows are precisely what you would see if there were no walls. Who THINKS of these things?!! My brain was firing at high-speed for days as I came off of the Google creative high. This place is amazing.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

What can we learn from the Google Offices?

Google clearly knows what they are doing with these innovative work environments. As stunning as the New York office is, word has it that the Zürich office is THE coolest. It is fascinating to think- These employees have some of the hardest to get jobs in the world. If THEY are maximizing their brain power through the variety of ways Google has conceived to shake up one’s creative juices, imagine what the work output must be there.  Humor, creativity, fun, movement, amenities, quality food, variety of environments, flexible hours…  Perhaps the rest of us might consider incorporating such elements into our work place design and work habits.

Google Offices on www.CourtneyPrice.com

 SOCIAL MEDIA USERS: A Note about G+

To address the recent rumors about G+ , here’s to hoping you didn’t shut down your profiles, it’s not going anywhere…

Courtney Price On InstagramIf you enjoyed this post, follow me on Instagram. I posted a VIDEO from Google of  a wall sized video feed where they track LIVE  Google use, check it out!

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Comments

  1. Charles Roberts says:

    Courtney, thanks so much for allowing us to tag along with you on your tour. Quite a departure from the old IBM model of dark suits, white shirts, and ties at work at all times. I think forward thinking companies realize that these types of environments actually create a work space that employees want to do their best work.

    Some might think people would take advantage of all these perks, but the opposite is usually true. They will usually work harder and accomplish more when given these types of freedoms. Thanks for the photos as always.

  2. Millicent Mason says:

    Couortney,
    I was so amazed at Google’s workplace. What a fascinating life you lead with such incredible
    experiences. And how very kind and thoughtful you are to share them with all of us. I will think
    about this video for days. I hope more work places will take note.
    I love reading your blogs. It keeps me in touch with the young world.
    Much love, Millicent

  3. I always think it would be terrific to work in an environment like that … because I probably wouldn’t be working! It would be almost impossible for me to avoid all the video games, ping-pong tables – even just sitting down in different chairs would draw me away from my desk.

    I don’t know how they do it – it simply looks too cool.
    Bob Borson recently posted…Book Reviews: Robert Moses and Harry WeeseMy Profile

  4. What an amazing opportunity!! We definitely need a sleep pod in our office at Kandrac & Kole:) Thanks for sharing!

  5. I’ve seen the Google offices in Mountain View and Boulder but the New York office design looks even more creative. Thanks for sharing all the cool innovative spaces and your lovely photography!

  6. This is the company that bought the Internet :-) Company that pays 1m $ per day for electricity ;-)
    Naturally the conditions and everything in this company is made of people with a lot of brain power.
    sorry for my english :-) I’m Bulgerian ;Only Bulgarians and Google speak Bulgarian LOL

  7. Courtney,
    Thanks so much for sharing your experience. It was awesome to read about the Google offices. It must have been a pretty amazing opportunity!

  8. Courtney, this is amazing! Thank you for sharing the Google work environment…wish we all could work in a space where creativity and varying work styles are appreciated!! This was a great visual and informative tool!

    Donna

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