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Publisher's Summary

From the visionary head of Google's innovative People Operations - a groundbreaking inquiry into the philosophy of work and a blueprint for attracting the most spectacular talent to your business and ensuring the best and brightest succeed.

"We spend more time working than doing anything else in life. It's not right that the experience of work should be so demotivating and dehumanizing." So says Laszlo Bock, head of People Operations at the company that transformed how the world interacts with knowledge. This insight is the heart of Work Rules!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto with the potential to change how we work and live.

Drawing on the latest research in behavioral economics and with a profound grasp of human psychology, Bock also provides teaching examples from a range of industries - including companies that are household names but hideous places to work and little-known companies that achieve spectacular results by valuing and listening to their employees. Bock takes us inside one of history's most explosively successful businesses to reveal why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work in the world, distilling 15 years of intensive worker R&D into delightfully counterintuitive principles that are easy to put into action whether you're a team of one or a team of thousands.

Cleaving the knot of conventional management, some lessons from Work Rules! include:

  • Take away managers' power over employees
  • Learn from your best employees - and your worst
  • Hire only people who are smarter than you are, no matter how long it takes to find them
  • Pay unfairly (it's more fair!)
  • Don't trust your gut: use data to predict and shape the future
  • Default to open: be transparent, and welcome feedback
  • If you're comfortable with the amount of freedom you've given your employees, you haven't gone far enough

Work Rules! shows how to strike a balance between creativity and structure, leading to success you can measure in quality of life as well as market share. Read it to build a better company from within rather than from above; read it to reawaken your joy in what you do.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2015 Laszlo Bock (P)2015 Hachette Audio

What the critics say

"A human resource professional and natural-sounding speaker, [Bock] delivers his book with a combination of boyish wonder and a matter-of-fact conviction." ( AudioFile)

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Google is so insightful

This book has so many "a-ha" moments. I found myself nodding along in the car while listening, agreeing with so much of what they said. Great book! #Audible1

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Great insight to google

I enjoyed this book however felt it went over the same points too many times for my liking.

highly recommend listening to get the insight to google

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Fantastic

If your job has any HR related component or leadership aspect you have to read this book.

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  • jeremiah
  • 2015-04-07

Multifaceted

Overall Works Rules! offers insights into why Google is exceptionally difficult to enter as an employee and some reasons why being a Google employee is desirable.

Work Rules! is a multifaceted work and could have easily been several thousand pages or spanned a full college course.

One topic discussed: Laszlo disclosed that Google created a sophisticated screening and recruiting system which requires vast amounts of resources and and executives for every new hire.
Google doesn't let functional managers make decisions on who to hire, fire or promote but has adopted a panelling system with the understanding that each panel member provides a unique frame of reference. Laszlo also added reasons as to why hiring only the best people is worth the extra burden.

Without boring you further: Read/Listen to Work Rules!
Help shatter outdated paradigms, Recognize People as People, that unfair is fair and that "Culture eats strategy for lunch"

24 people found this helpful

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  • Jonathan Masukawa
  • 2016-06-09

Review from a former Google Software Engineer

Pretty accurate depiction of how work culture was at Google, both the good and the bad.

I've experienced both the failures and successes of the People Operations team, and witnessed the data/experimentation driven approach to continually improving the workplace to be an interesting and meaningful place. A good listen for anyone interested in the answer to "Why is Google seen as a great place to work?"

My eventual departure was unrelated to culture (I'll be back in a heartbeat if I need stable work).

9 people found this helpful

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  • Nicholas Stoyer
  • 2017-07-12

Excellent HR philosophy and practice

Those in HR and especially recruiting will enjoy learning and reflecting on what made Google unique under Bock. Entrepreneurs can utilize this work as they plan and build their company structure during its infancy. Listened through several times already and highly respect how Google and Bock relied so heavily on data not intuition, perception, or normality to guide their HR pursuit.

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  • Elena G
  • 2021-02-24

Insightful

I read How Google Works before and this book is very aligned with that one, still it is full of insights on how to find, attract, hire and retain talented people and make work environment truly innovative and collaborative. While it looks like HR book, it isn't that - if you believe that you can transform your own company being in any role, make your work environment more connected, smart and joyful, this is a "must read" for you.

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  • Austin Haukinz
  • 2016-12-30

Enjoyable but one sided

I enjoyed this book. There were numerous key insights in business and people leadership practices that were helpful. Overall though this book didn't quite reach the heights of classics like Good to Great or 7 Habbits, mainly due to the sometimes scattered narrative. Also, this book only follows the story of Google and sometimes feels one sided. A good read though, especially if you work in HR.

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  • Anthony
  • 2016-07-31

Intriguing to hear from inside Google

Any additional comments?

This was a good book. I do not work in HR, but was interested in hearing about the inner workings of Google from a people perspective. At times, I felt I was forcing myself to keep listening, but I busted through and finished the book. If you work in HR this is a GREAT book for you. Otherwise, it's ok. The best books I listen to will make me want to listen to them again in the future. However, I think once was enough for me on this.

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  • Patrick
  • 2015-10-05

Solid Advice

Great examples paired with sound advice about some out of the box ideas. From paying unfairly when its unfair to do otherwise to gathering as much data to support decisions and reducing the amount of times you go on gut feel.

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  • sop
  • 2015-07-17

A must-read for HR everywhere

Brilliant insights to make your workplace better, attract the right people and create an environment where people can do their best work.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-10-11

Best HR book of all time

Wow - I wish I came across this book sooner.

You always wish you had an exact playbook to make your company a great place to work, and Laszlo gives you just that.

Buy this book immediately, and start implementing the golden nuggets found inside.

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  • RCG
  • 2020-09-07

Enough about Google

To be fair, I didn't finish this book. After listeng to the first 90 minutes or so, I put it aside and just couldn't get interested in picking it up again. But the first part, for me, was grating. The author just continually tells you how great Google is. The products (which he brags about; how did that great Google glass work out?), the "fun", etc. I just couldn't get through it. And of course, Google is an enormously successful company -- no doubt. But over an hour of lead-in with that was too much. There are many great books on leadership and motivation out there, that get right to it.

1 person found this helpful