There's an internal joke at Google that sums up the company's big change

GoogleJustin Sullivan/GettyA Google employee works at the corporate offices.

Last week, Google completely reorganized itself, marking a huge change to the way the business operates.

Larry Page is now the CEO of a new company called Alphabet, which oversees all of the new big-picture initiatives Google has been launching as of late. Google is now a subsidiary of Alphabet, and Sundar Pichai will be its CEO.

It’s a massive shakeup, but one former Google employee we spoke with said employees are used to change.

“The internal joke within [Google] was if you’re not moving your desk every six months, something was very wrong with the company,” this ex-employee who requested to remain anonymous said in an interview with Business Insider.

This employee went on to say that the general culture at Google always focused on the long-term.

“As far as Larry and Sergey [Brin] are concerned, they’re thinking about it beyond 10 years, even 100 years from now,” this person said. “All of the HR policies I’ve had exposure to, a lot of the programs even within Google, they have all had that long-term vision. In order to succeed at that long-term point, you have to not be afraid to disrupt your own company.”

Although Google employees have greeted this unprecedented level of company “disruption” warmly for the most part, there’s a darker side to the joke too.

Google has long been infamous for its frequent management shuffles, referred to as “reorgs,” which insiders have told Business Insider in the past can sometimes feel spurred by internal politics, rather than necessity.

“Anytime there was a change in senior management there was a reorg for the sake of a reorg,” one former employee recently told Business Insider.

During the two years this person was at Google, they had four different managers and went through six different reorgs.

Another source who left Google right before the Alphabet shift recently griped to Business Insider that they had gone through six re-orgs in even less time: only a year and a half.

That person speculates that as the dust settles from this massive, unexpected shift, Google is likely to see a slew of departures from people who might not like where this particular reorg left them.

If you’re a Google employee with thoughts on Alphabet, we’d love to hear from you! [email protected]

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