Last week, Google staff at London headquarters in Victoria made their way up to the brand new fourth floor, former engineering level, ‘L4’. This amazing space laughs in the face of a general consensus that fun workplaces harm productivity. This is an environment that focuses on creativity, comfort and openness.
The open plan space creates opportunities for collisions of genius to occur, as many products manifest when teams around the building discover each other’s work, and link up to discuss new approaches. The brainstormers are spoilt for choice with access to a games suite complete with consoles, TV and pool table, and a sound proof music hang-out, equipped with guitars and drums. A gym is also at hand to keep the workers in healthy body and mind, or employees can sit back on deck chairs in a garden scene complete with grassy carpet and a stray rowing boat!
Star ship inspired corridors lead from clear walled pods equipped with video conferencing nooks, to relaxation zones with squishy seating and headphones to block out distractions. Walls lined with white boards record ideas off the cuff, to be discussed later on the giant dual level sofas that fill the cushion scattered meeting rooms. With a ‘coffee lab’ serving an extensive range of blends to stimulate the creative buzz, and four free restaurants, including sushi and tapas bars, to feed the brain, we wonder if anyone ever leaves!