Google is one of the greatest companies in the world today. It’s lucrative, it’s cutting edge and it offers great pay. Pretty much, if you’re a tech-savvy, young professional then your dream job is at the search engine juggernaut. If you don’t want to work at a company like Google then you have to really question your priorities.
At the same time, however, just because your career desire is to park your behind at Google it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be hired immediately. The tech titan employs a number of hiring techniques and measures to ensure they’re taking on the best of the best. And it isn’t all about high grades, perfection and superb expertise.
Researchers and past Google employees have noted that the company looks for out-of-the-box workers. In other words, your GPA of 4.0 and your strong acumen for all things technology isn’t the only criteria human resources departments and hiring managers look for job applicants. It all boils down to this: how kind are you to a waiter? Can you be interesting at an airport?
Here are eight ways Google hires the best talents:
1. Intellectual Humility Among New Hires
When you’re brilliant and someone who has never had difficulty in his or her life before, you lack the intellectual humility. It isn’t exactly your fault if you fall into this camp because you have been taught from your first day in Kindergarten to your final day in college to depend on your talent and just succeed. You don’t know how to fail gracefully. In fact, you’ve never failed, period. And thus, failing is a foreign concept to you.
Google wants those who are humble and accept defeat. Google’s line of thought basically comes down to this: They don’t want an employee who thinks that if something succeeds then it’s because they’re a genius and if something goes wrong then it’s because someone else is stupid.
2. Learning Ability is Key
Again, this falls into the realm of genius. You’re a smart person and you’ve never really come across a problem that is really difficult for you to grasp. This means your ability to learn has never actually come to fruition and been nurtured. Google doesn’t value this.
To the tech giant, learning ability is far more important than IQ, intelligence and astuteness. What this means is that Google searches for candidates that can process information on the spot and understand a concept with little pieces of information. In order to find someone like this, the company conducts behavioral interviews.
3. Zero Schooling Equals Independent Learning
Just because you went to college or university it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’d be the greatest employee the company has ever had. Since talent can be found in so many corners of the world, whether in a classroom or in your mother’s basement, Google looks beyond campuses.
Google views individuals who don’t go to school and succeed on their own in the world as "exceptional human beings." Google does everything in its power to locate those people. According to Google, schools essentially just put their students in debt and help in their "extended adolescence."
4. Setting a High Hiring Bar
Once you have a high bar when it comes to hiring talent and it works, you never look back.
Google explains that as companies grow the original company founders have less of a say on who comes on board and who doesn’t. This decision is left in the hands of HR, and in turn, the department is pressured to hire more people faster, and they pretty much could be anybody. Once the employees see poor performers in the company it issues the message that it’s fine to compromise.
What Google does to ensure its hiring standard remains high is to take away the final decision from the hiring manager and give it to an independent committee. This committee reviews the interview results and will give the go ahead or disapproval. Even Larry Page reviews each offer.
5. Giving Candidates a Reason to Work for Google
Today’s generation of employees want to have a reason to work for a specific company. Millennials want to be contributing to something more than just profits and a paycheck. They want to change the world and make it positive. Google understands this and provides them with a reason.
One Google recruiter finds a way to connect the human desire of meaning with each candidate he speaks to. By taking this approach, he has been able to recruit a large number of candidates. Indeed, many of them have been great, others not so much. For instance, the recruiter cites a Sri Lankan textiles manufacturer who helps women get out of poverty, as well as a New York City deli who feels he’s making the world a better place. Google simply wants to hire people that want to make the world a better place.
6. The LAX Test
Passion, character and being interesting are all attributes that Google looks for candidates. It’s these qualities that insinuate engagement. You can really find out about a person when the job interview takes place at a restaurant, and how the applicant treats the waiter or server. Or, at an airport.
But how can recruiters determine this? It’s simple: they take the LAX test. The Los Angeles airport is one of the worst airports for one Google hiring manager. If a job candidate can pass the "can I spend six hours with this person waiting for a flight?" test then they’ll be hired. However, if the applicant makes you want to search for your tablet to do some work then chances are they won’t be hired.
The LAX test consists of "googleyness," which includes "ambition and drive, team orientation, service orientation, listening & communication skills, bias to action, effectiveness, interpersonal skills, creativity, and integrity."
7. 30 Minutes for an Interview
Why spend one hour in a job interview? For professional hiring managers, you know someone is right for the job as soon as you lay your eyes on them. So why waste time spending an entire hour with them?
This is why Google spends thirty minutes with job candidates, no matter what. Since most interviews will lead to rejections, Google wants to invest the least amount of time in them. Of course, if you have a great candidate on hand and you want to speak with them further then you simply schedule another interview.
8. No Nepotism at Google
If there is one thing that all employees detest and resent at a firm it’s nepotism. When a person is hired because of a friendship or a family relation, they will immediately gain the ire of the workforce, especially if they’re given a senior position. Google understands this so it takes a different approach.
One of the many mottos at Google is that friends don’t let friends hire or promote friends. Akin to setting a high bar, it leaves all of the final hiring decision to an independent committee. This means there is less likelihood that HR will hire a nephew, best friend from high school or girlfriend.
See Also: 10 Stupid Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make
Google is a multi-billion-dollar company for a reason. It’s successful, not just because of Larry Page, but because of the people that fill the seats at Google. Indeed, they are some of the smartest people in Silicon Valley today, but they also share many of the same characteristics and attributes that Google wants and needs. The moral of the story is: if you think you’ll be able to work Google just because you have a 4.0 GPA and straight A’s then be prepared to be disappointed.
Are you someone who could work for a company like Google? Let us know in the comments section.