Update: We’ve heard from a reader who says the engineer described below, Michael Church, worked at Google for six months and is no longer at the company. He reached out to us and said he was not fired. Here’s what he had to say:
“I think very, very highly of many, many of the engineers I worked with and really would appreciate it being made clear that almost everyone whom I worked with on a daily basis I consider to be people who deserve the utmost respect for their work and their talents.”
Original: A Google engineer is blasting the company’s management, and accusing it of abandoning “20 per cent time.”
Googlers are supposed to get 20 per cent time to work on a personal project, like a new app or something entrepreneurial. It’s supposed to keep its employees excited and keep them from burning out working on the same Google project.
20% time is dead. It requires managerial approval…
Managers have free rein to fuck over an employee in Perf if they believe him to be “distracted” or at risk of future distraction by 20% time, even if that employee’s performance is otherwise strong. This doesn’t make Google any worse or any different from more traditionally managed companies. It does deprive them of the right to market 20% time as a perk without being called out as liars.
It happened after an all-hands meeting in July last year, according to the post.
Another person who appears to be a Google engineer said later in the thread that managers who deprive engineers of their 20 per cent time for more than a quarter get in trouble.
We reached out to Google for comment, but haven’t heard back yet. Google still claims it offers 20 per cent time on its jobs website.
Are you a current or former Google engineer that knows what’s going on in the Plex? We want to know how things are going under Larry Page! Shoot us a message at [email protected] — we’ll keep it confidential.