Google’s 100 year study of employee happiness

From the Harvard Business Review:

This isn’t your typical employee survey. Since we know that the way each employee experiences work is determined by innate characteristics (nature) and his or her surroundings (nurture), the gDNA survey collects information about both. Here’s how it works: a randomly selected and representative group of over 4,000 Googlers completes two in-depth surveys each year. The survey itself is built on scientifically validated questions and measurement scales. We ask about traits that are static, like personality; characteristics that change, like attitudes about culture, work projects, and co-workers; and how Googlers fit into the web of relationships around all of us. We then consider how all these factors interact, as well as with biographical characteristics like tenure, role and performance. Critically, participation is optional and confidential.

What do we hope to learn? In the short-term, how to improve wellbeing, how to cultivate better leaders, how to keep Googlers engaged for longer periods of time, how happiness impacts work and how work impacts happiness.

Interesting. There’s potential to help fine-tune work environments to make employees happier and, presumably, more productive. There’s a big brother aspect to this. Hopefully, the “Don’t be evil” motto is still in effect at Google.