The culture defines the outcome

Autonomy, mastery and purpose are the new building blocks for the emerging workspace – or what Pamela Meyer calls our Play-space.  Because as Don Tapscott reminds us the emerging Net Gen has it right: work = collaboration = creativity = fun = work

The Results Only Work Environment is coming of age and the hypertension-inducing nation of clock-punching is eroding.  WL Gore, HCL Technologies, Google and Whole Foods are currently out front in management innovation and the race is on to build the 21st century play-space environments that foster the kinds of killer app product creation that happened organically in the 90s.  The thing is – we’re now understanding that these creative hotbeds don’t have to happen by happy accident.  We can create environments that are not command-and-control, that allow the best ideas to emerge and where resources gravitate to the best ideas, instead of being hierarchically allocated.

Google wants to be a highly inventive company with little tier-based control, and so attracts highly inventive people and then assigns managers about 60 direct reports, which is intentionally unmanageable.  Who can possibly exert granular management over 60 people?  That’s the point.  Google also is a world of radical transparency, or as Schmidt puts it, “highly porous.”  Because remember, if you want real sustainable competitive advantage it has to be in the DNA.  A product sleight of hand, or lucky market timing break won’t persevere.  As Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, says it so nicely here, “The culture defines the outcome.”