San Francisco is rapidly polarizing against its tech workers as protests mount about shuttle bus use, and a huge rise in rents and evictions.
There would be less of a problem if tech workers were known in their communities but they aren’t. I know only one Google worker outside of my work circle and I have a large social circle of non-techies built over two decades.
Here are the many ways Silicon Valley tech workers are deliberately kept isolated:
Building a company culture is the same as building a cult and the practices are well known, studied and very effective at controlling people. They are used by many mainstream organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous, not just Google.
All cults are bad because they isolate and continually indoctrinate people with a self-serving ideology that promotes its agenda above all others. Integration, and broad access to ideas and conversations builds relationships between neighbors, and creates strong communities.
Todd Carlisle, Director of Staffing, at Google says the free perks aren’t necessary. He said no one ever turned down a job at Google because there was no free lunch.
Astonishingly, he also said that Google analysed all its data and found absolutely no difference in productivity between office and home-based workers.
So why does it insist on bussing its workers?
It must be because it helps build a strong company culture — it binds its people closer together. They are less likely to leave.
Pop the bubble…
If I were in charge I would shutter the canteens and garage the shuttle buses for one day a week, and turn off the spigot of free services. And see if my staff can figure out how to get to work on time, and how to feed themselves, and maybe even figure out how to use a laundromat.
They might even come back with some new ideas.
Original ideas require original experiences. You won’t get them from inside a bubble.