Summary of “Everyone Hates Setting Goals. Here’s How Google Makes It Easier for Its Employees”

On Google’s re:Work site, a resource that shares the company’s perspective on people operations, Google explains the concept.
Objectives are the “Big picture.” They answer the questions “Where do we want to go?” and “What do we want to do?” Also, objectives are where Google encourages its employees to stretch themselves, be ambitious, and embrace uncertainty.
If you don’t get nervous or feel a little uncomfortable after setting a goal, then you haven’t reached high enough.
Because they are designed to stretch employees, Google recommends only three to five objectives total.
Anything more, and Google knows that it runs the risk of spreading employees too thin.
What Google warns against are goals that don’t “Push for new achievements.” The examples they share are: “Keep hiring,” “Maintain market position,” or “Continue doing X.”.
Google includes everyone’s goals on their internal directory.
In a YouTube video that explains how Google uses OKRs, Rick Klau provided some additional clarity on the process: “Personal OKRs define what the person is working on. Team OKRs define priorities for the team, not just a collection of individual OKRs. Company OKRs are big picture, a top-level focus for the entire company.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Team Up to Disrupt Health Care”

News of the announcement sent the stocks of established health care providers plunging, and touched off a wave of speculation about what the new company might do.
“Those are three big players, and I think if they get into health care insurance or the health care coverage space they are going to make a big impact.”
Even the three companies don’t seem to be certain how they intend to shake up the health care system.
One idea is an online health care dashboard that connects employees with the closest and best doctor specializing in whatever ailment they select from a drop-down menu, one of the people said.
One of the people familiar with the partnership between the companies said it took form as Mr. Bezos, Mr. Buffett, and Mr. Dimon, who are friends, discussed the complications of the country’s health care system and the challenges of providing insurance to their employees.
Amazon has long been mentioned by health care analysts and industry executives as a potential new player in the sector.
The announcement on Tuesday again highlighted investor worry about Amazon disrupting the health care industry.
Large corporations have often taken an active role in their employees’ health care.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Companies That Do Right by Their Workers Start by Elevating Their Definition of Success”

There’s been a ripple of excitement of late as some big companies have unveiled raises and bonuses for workers.
A sound economy, a booming stock market, and huge business tax cuts, the story goes, have convinced CEOs of companies flush with cash to distribute some of it to frontline employees.
That story is fine as far as it goes – but does it go nearly far enough? With unemployment at record lows, yet inequality at record highs, this feels like a time for CEOs to think bigger – not just to raise wages, but to elevate their definition of success about how their companies can win big in the marketplace and afford employees a greater sense of security and participation in the workplace, how they can generate wealth and share that wealth with everyone who has a hand in its creation.
It may sound lofty, even a bit na├»ve, but there is a model for how a more robust and sustainable definition of success can work – and it’s been working for a long time.
They share in year-end bonuses based on the company’s financial performance, participate in a well-funded pension plan, and enjoy perks that most companies would reserve for their top brass.
The Constitution established 113 principles that determine how the organization is governed, including a right to “Comfortable and businesslike but not luxurious” working conditions, and “Openness, tolerance, and freedom to express criticism, questions and suggestions.” As one senior executive explained to me, “The focus of most companies is to improve their financial capital. Our focus is on social capital.”
To be sure, I don’t expect Walmart, American Airlines, or Wells Fargo to transform themselves into U.S. versions of John Lewis – companies where rank-and-file employees have a major piece of the action, a real voice in strategy, even a vote on who represents them in the boardroom.
Is it too much to ask, at a time when so many big companies are enjoying so much prosperity, that their leaders imagine a more expansive and sustainable definition of success for everyone in the company?

The orginal article.

Summary of “Whole Foods employees reveal why stores are facing a crisis of food shortages”

Whole Foods employees say stores are suffering from food shortages because of a newly implemented inventory-management system called order-to-shelf, or OTS. Whole Foods says the system reduces unnecessary inventory, lowers costs, and frees up employees to focus on customer service.
Whole Foods is facing a crush of food shortages in stores that’s leading to empty shelves, furious customers, and frustrated employees.
Whole Foods employees say the problems began before the acquisition.
They blame the shortages on a buying system called order-to-shelf that Whole Foods implemented across its stores early last year.
Business Insider spoke with seven Whole Foods employees, from cashiers to department managers, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retribution.
Whole Foods gets stores to comply with OTS by instructing managers to regularly walk through store aisles and storage rooms with checklists to make sure every item is in its right place and there is no excess stock.
“We’re moving basically from a federated system of purchasing to a unified system of purchasing, and we expect to see a lot of cost savings there,” Glenda Flanagan, a Whole Foods executive vice president, said on an earnings call in May. The company has also said OTS frees up employees to focus on customer service.
One employee at a Texas Whole Foods store said that when Amazon representatives at a recent question-and-answer session were asked about stocking issues, they indicated they weren’t aware of the problems and said they would have to be addressed with Whole Foods’ leadership.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why More One-Person Businesses Are Breaking $1 Million Dollars In Revenue”

When Katherine Krug raised $1.2 million on Kickstarter to manufacture BetterBack, a posture-support device she created after developing sciatica during long hours at her computer, it was just the beginning of her success.
Krug soon appeared on the TV show Shark Tank, and the publicity helped her business grow.
All told, in her first 365 days of business, Krug brought in $3 million in revenue.
As Krug has grown the business to the point where it is thriving, she is in the fortunate position where she must answer an important question: “What is my vision for BetterBack – and my life – and how do I achieve it?”.
Krug is part of one of the most exciting trends in our economy: the growth of ultra-lean one-person businesses that are reaching and exceeding $1 million in revenue.
Krug could have trained her employee more or looked for someone else, but the traditional boss-employee relationship didn’t feel right to her.
Ultimately, Krug opted to continue relying on contractors to help her grow, as she has done successfully from the beginning.
Even with her business growing rapidly, Krug has not had to change a lifestyle she loves because of her conscious decision to run the firm the way that works for her.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Facebook Couldn’t Handle News. Maybe It Never Wanted To.”

It’s not about time spent, CEO Mark Zuckerberg told the New York Times, but “That time spent on Facebook is time well spent.” For Zuckerberg well spent means not just more rewarding interactions with friends and family, but less misinformation and fake news – and presumably less congressional scrutiny as well.
“Facebook has research showing that if the percentage of friend/family content gets too low then people don’t find Facebook valuable anymore.” It’s worth noting that this former employee is dubious of Facebook’s spin.
“Facebook has become an essential piece of infrastructure for public content, and we should be wary of anything that undermines the platform’s utility here. The media is on the frontlines of helping our society navigate the present challenges, and Facebook has an obligation to help its community connect with information as readily as with friends.”
With Facebook’s centrality in our lives and the greater culture, the company’s retreat feels less like a selfless act than an abdication of a civic responsibility that Facebook perhaps never truly wanted.
“News on Facebook has actually hurt, not helped, them,” another former senior Facebook employee told BuzzFeed.
To hear Facebook insiders tell it, it’s unclear how much the company truly wanted to be in the media game.
It’s hardly surprising that the Great News Feed Shift of 2018 has made fewer waves inside Facebook HQ. Multiple former employees told BuzzFeed News they believe the move will be popular among Facebook employees.
Still, after years of grand claims from Facebook and its top executives, it’s hard not to view the changes the company is making to its News Feed as an admission that the company overreached and ultimately failed to deliver a new way forward for news.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Do you work more than 39 hours a week? Your job could be killing you”

Long hours, stress and physical inactivity are bad for our wellbeing – yet we’re working harder than ever.
Memories were still fresh of Moritz Erhardt, the 21-year-old London intern who died after working 72 hours in a row at Bank of America.
Technology was supposed to liberate us from much of the daily slog, but has often made things worse: in 2002, fewer than 10% of employees checked their work email outside of office hours.
Last week, 15,000 workers called a strike, demanding a 28-hour work week with unchanged pay and conditions.
Science is on their side: research from the Australian National University recently found that working anything over 39 hours a week is a risk to wellbeing.
Is there a healthy and acceptable level of work? According to US researcher Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, most modern employees are productive for about four hours a day: the rest is padding and huge amounts of worry.
Because there is a danger that merely reducing working hours will not change much, when it comes to health, if jobs are intrinsically disenfranchising.
In order to make jobs more conducive to our mental and physiological welfare, much less work is definitely essential.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Snap’s unusual structure led to a series of breakthroughs”

On the other, the company’s struggles illustrate the challenges created by its unusual “Hub-and-spoke” organizational structure, which puts Spiegel at the center of all decision-making at the company.
The hub-and-spoke model means the company can sometimes iterate faster than its peers, cutting through internal politics to arrive at visionary breakthroughs.
Snap’s structure also usurps authority from its product managers, some of whom have left amid complaints they lacked the autonomy they would have at other large tech companies, former employees said.
The public face and chief strategist at the company has been Spiegel, an obsessive product mind who reveres Steve Jobs, former employees say.
Spiegel’s instincts have also led the company astray.
Spectacles, a high-profile move into hardware, sold far fewer units than the company projected, leaving the company with $40 million in unsold camera-augmented sunglasses.
Former employees say Spiegel’s meticulous involvement with every product proposal and risky investments in pet projects like Spectacles have cost the company time and money.
One former employee characterized Snapchat’s ideal user, in the eyes of Spiegel, as “a 16-year-old girl in the US on the newest iPhone.” Having mostly saturated that market – while losing ground to Instagram internationally – the company is now belatedly working in earnest to make itself more approachable.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Make Civility the Norm on Your Team”

Once an employee joins your team, it’s important to reinforce those values.
Marriott, for example, identified three pillars of employee well-being: “We all need to feel good about ourselves, the workplace, and about our company’s role in society.” Managers at Marriott know that small daily acts affect how employees interact with others and that civility spreads in networks.
When establishing specific principles you want employees to follow in how they treat others, I’ve found that it’s beneficial to engage them in an ongoing conversation about what civility means.
These discussions garner more support and empower employees to hold one another accountable for civil behavior.
If your employees aren’t behaving well, and you’ve already gone through the trouble of hammering home the organization’s civility message, ask yourself, “Have I also equipped them to succeed?” Don’t assume everyone instinctively knows how to be civil; many people never learned the basic skills.
To teach employees these skills, you need to give explicit training that covers what civility looks like, describes situations in which employees sometimes act uncivilly, provides tips on how to maintain composure, and affords opportunities to practice behaving civilly in emotionally charged situations.
A coach who reviews fundamental concepts and expectations must also be ready to hold employees accountable.
Even if you establish expectations, define what civility means on your team, give people training and coaching, you can’t expect employees to treat one another with respect, if you don’t.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Inside Faraday Future’s financial house of cards”

Their accounts support and build on previous reports, and paint a more comprehensive picture of unusual financial management by the two people most directly in charge of the company’s finances: Jia Yueting, the main investor and shareholder, and Chaoying Deng, who has held many different titles at the company, but lists herself as the company’s vice president of administration on LinkedIn.
Others are simply no longer showing up for work; when YT arrived at the company’s Gardena, California, headquarters on the morning of Monday, November 20th to meet a group of potential investors, he found so few employees on site that an email, which was obtained by The Verge, was sent to staff by Faraday Future’s head of go-to market strategy that reinforced the company’s work hours.
Representatives for Faraday Future admit that YT is the main financial backer of the company, but have maintained that the company was independent from his Chinese conglomerate LeEco, which is currently mired in controversy.
In documents filed with the California secretary of state in 2016, YT was listed as the CEO of Ocean View Drive, Inc. Around early 2015, Faraday Future’s founding executives presented YT with a plan for the company that focused on one model made in one small factory, according to former employees with direct knowledge of the company’s finances.
The physical distance between the company’s executives in California and LeEco executives in China increased frustrations throughout the company that YT was trying to “Shadow manage” Faraday Future, former employees say.
The ultimate goal, according to multiple employees familiar with Faraday Future’s manufacturing plans, was to produce the LeSee car using the same production lines Faraday would use to make its own car, the FF91. The company missed a planned 2016 CES reveal partly because of YT’s constant changes, these people say.
In 2017 especially, according to multiple former employees with knowledge of the company’s finances, the money that came into the company was often spent immediately, and there was generally “No money in the bank.” The only stable deposits in 2017 were used for company payroll, which cost Faraday Future about $12 million a month, these former employees say.
Krause, a former executive at Deutsche Bank and BMW, was brought to Faraday Future in March to put the company on the right financial track.

The orginal article.