Posts in Category: Books

Work rules – loved it, please amend it

I am a happy iphone, ipad, Macbook Pro user that is just in love with Google: the products, the work, the culture(as much as I know about it: Who would not like to ride the bike inside the office?). It is no wander that the next day after I heard this interview with the  SVP, People Operations Laszlo Bock I got the Kindle edition of his book.
Actually “Work rules!” was my non-technical vacation book. (Yes, I read about work rules and how work [can] rule during my holidays ).
One cannot dislike a book in which the sincerity can be felt: Laszlo even admits the doubts he has when he became a Googler. Usually when I read a book/article, that is said to be about team management, I get kind of septic: same old tricks rephrased. Well, that was definitely not the case about “Work rules”. It provides not only lots of results form “experiments” that took place at Google (and as Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said: Grown-ups love numbers … ), but also some rules that could be applied in order to achieve having an awesome (Googlish) work place. There were plenty of times when I was asked: “Why are you giggling?” Do not get me wrong it is a serious book about a serious matter, but written in a way that it is easy to read, by inserting anecdotes from Googlers day by day work time.


There is something I do not entirely agree with: the cover of the book: It is said that it will change the way one lives and leads. Ok, I know the work is part of our life and the way we work is part of the way we actually live (see the below diagram)

but I felt this is not a book for managers or people that want to become managers/leaders. I felt that this is a book for everyone – no matter of the label she/he has. I am pretty sure that anyone can apply most of the rules stated in its regular working day. So, the amend I would like to do see is the cover to say : “THAT WILL TRANSFORM HOW YOU LIVE, WORK AND LEAD”.

Laszlo, I am looking forward to reading the second edition and hope it has the amended cover!
P.S. I hope the next one has some data analysis in regards to the number of people applying for a job at Google (before and after this book was released).

What if?

Being the first post I write about books I need to say something  about the relationship between books and I:

  1. I usually read 2 books at a time
  2. I choose the books by:
    •  friend’s recommandation
    • goodreads or other site’s newsletter/recommandations
    • beautiful cover in a library
    • title
  3. I usually give a book 100 pages to impress me. In case this does not happen I leave it behind without feeling sorry
  4. I buy as gifts for others books I want to borrow
  5. During the winter I enjoy reading near the fireplace or any other heating source :p

Goodreads recommended for me in October a book that seemed to be interesting : “What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions” by RANDALL MUNROE. The next minute I was on Amazon downloading the sample for this book, googling for information on the author( a former NASA roboticist, curently webcomic) I instantly felt inlove with the title, the idea behind this book and the way it was written. Even though it had to wait patinently in my pipeline till the winter holiday, when I came back to the rest of the book the same feeling reappeared. This is a book that:

  • makes you wonder/think ( sometimes I used google for further information about phisics topics I’ve forgotten since highschool)
  • makes you smile
  • and just gives you a hint of how perfect this universe is.

I was also impressed by the fact that there are also treated questions that usually are associated with philosophy rather than any exact science like: “is there only a soul-mate for a person?”
During the time I was reading it I asked myself several times : “wouldn’t a book like this make any kid more interested in mathematics, phisics or chemistry?” I did not get any answer, but in case the answer is “no” probably nothing would :).

p.s.: this is not a review. Here are just my thoughts on this book. I consider it to be a book that can be read by anyone from the students in secondary school without superior age limit.