For many reasons, Google is a dream workplace for future knowledge workers. The company provides a challenging and stimulating environment that attracts top talent.
But Google, like many innovative companies, is no longer looking for purely technical skills. In their recruitment process, they are increasingly leaving room for improvised problem-solving exercises, which involve group thinking. Candidates are invited to work together to solve problems that are far from their original field of expertise. The most successful are those that can find the rule or model that best applies to the use case.
This process is similar to Google’s internal process, which values sharing times called Scrums. Every day, employees from the same organization get up and explain the missions they will conduct during the day. This way, everyone can know which problem everyone is facing and provide their perspective on the matter.
Similarly, at the end of the week, everyone says what they have accomplished or failed to accomplish. These moments stimulate the pride and creativity of each person to share their idea, to assess those of others, or to even outbid them.
In this way, Google seeks to train creative and collaborative problem-solver employees. They teach them to listen to the ideas of others and add their insights in a game of intellectual stimulation.
This divergent and generative thinking is certainly one of the keys to Google’s great innovation in software design (Gmail, Gmap, Google Photo, Google Keep, Google News). And it will be decisive in the years to come to enlighten new technologies with powerful ideas.