Management entails finding solutions to the problems in an organization by creatively using the resources in an organization is a manner that meets the established missions and objectives. An organization’s style and systems are very critical to this process. This is because the synchrony of the organizational style and the systems in place either impedes or enhances the efforts of organizational management. This paper highlights the crucial relationship between organizational style and systems, using Google as a case study.
Google is an iconic brand world over as evidenced by its top products in the media and technology industry. The organizational style at Google is the chaotic style of management. This is a new style where the hierarchy of the organization gives its employees a lot of latitude and total control in terms of decision making. Google is one of the modern companies that have adopted this unconventional style (Emerald, 2002). Using the chaotic management style, Google has become one of the most innovative and influential company around the globe. The success at Google has given this style a new found respectability (Lashinsky, 2006).
Key Systems at Google
The two most important systems at Google are innovation and human resources. As an important system in the company’s organizational style, innovation is one of the attributes that have propelled Google onto the pinnacle of global business. The mode in which this system operates has been the source of envy from other managers in bureaucratic organizations. This approach to innovation uses a market based system. This implies that the employees of the company are given latitude and encouragement to come up with new projects. The best ideas from these thought out projects receive funding from the company (Iyer & Davenport, 2008).
The employees who come up with these ideas are also given control over the development of these ideas into products that are ready to be launched into the market. The importance of this approach is that the employees are not impeded by the intricacies of bureaucracy, and hence have the liberty and freedom of thought to come up with innovative ideas. Additionally, the employees are encouraged by the availability of funds to explore their ideas and develop them into products for the market. The importance of this is that the employees do not limit their thought process because of fear that inadequacy or unavailability of funds will derail their ambitions (Iyer & Davenport, 2008).
The other key system at Google is the human resource. As a company that values innovation, Google sources talented people from around the globe to work in the company. Even after recruiting the most innovative people from different nationalities, Google goes a step further to grow and develop its employees by refining its core programs in addition to developing other programs to ensure that the working environment of its employees is enabling. Such programs include arcade games in the company premises, and facilities that take over menial tasks that would normally take the time from the employee’s hands. With all the menial tasks taken care of by the company, the employee has all the time to generate and test the feasibility of great ideas as preambles for interesting products (Jackson, 2012).
Relationship between Key Elements and Organizational Structure and Strategy
Google employs a generic business level strategy. More precisely, the company uses the differentiation strategy. Due to this business level strategy, the company is able to offer different and unique products that have different purposes for different people in different sectors of the market. With regards to this, the key systems in the company work in perfect synchrony with this business level strategy. Innovation helps the company achieve differentiation in its product line. The human resources system is also very important in this relationship. As espoused earlier, Google recruits its employees from all corners of the globe, the chief attribute being innovativeness. As such, there is a convergence of innovativeness that is influenced by different cultures. This enables the company to come up with products that are not only innovative but also unique and differentiated (Iyer & Davenport, 2008).
Recommendations for Changing the Style and Systems in order to Improve Performance
A very big percentage of Google’s revenue streams from web advertising. Despite the numerous innovations, and a culture that holds innovation as one of its values, innovative products from Google have not proven to be reliable alternative sources of revenue for the company. It is my recommendation that Google amends its policy on evaluating the suitability of ideas for funding in order to incorporate a quantitative aspect in addition to the existing qualitative aspect. This means that in addition to looking at the passion for the product, the company should also consider the potential market size for the prospective product before availing funds. This will bring about a discipline in innovation that has made companies like Procter and Gamble flourish in their fields.
Google has shown the importance of innovation and human resource development in a company’s business model. In the same respect, the value of a company’s organizational style has been exemplified by the success of the company using a style that has not been the favorite for many companies. Even in the face of this unrivalled success, it is the high time Google evolved to introduce discipline in its style and systems in order to sustain its success.
Emerald (2002). Googling out of control: Can Google's chaos management style ensure continuing success? Strategic direction.23 (8): 25-27.
Iyer, B. & Davenport, T. (2008). Reverse engineering Google’s innovation machine. Boston. Harvard Business Review.
Jackson, S. (2012). Human resource management. Eleventh International Edition. Boston. South-Western Cengage Learning.
Lashinsky, A. (2006). Chaos by design. The inside story of disorder, disarray, and uncertainty at Google. And why it's all part of the plan. (They hope.) Available at> http://money.cnn.com/ magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2006/10/02/8387489/index. htm?postversion=2006