At most companies, if you think you’ve witnessed sexual harassment, sexism, bigotry or racism, there s one way to get it addressed: going to human resources. At Google, there’s another way to air your grievance: submitting your complaint to an employee-run message board that’s curated into a weekly email.
The list, called “Yes, at Google,” is a grassroots effort to collect anonymous submissions at Google and parent Alphabet Inc. and communicate them across the company, according to five current employees who receive the emails. “Yes, at Google” tracks allegations of unwelcome behavior at work in an attempt to make the company more inclusive, said the employees, who did not want to be named because they were not authorized to speak about internal company matters. Since starting in October, more than 15,000 employees – 20 percent of the company’s workforce – have subscribed, according to two of those people.
Google management is aware of the list. “We work really hard to promote and preserve a culture of respect and inclusion,” a Google spokesperson said in a statement. “Our employees have numerous ways to raise issues – both negative and positive – with us, including through grassroots transparency efforts like this one. We take concerns seriously and take appropriate measures to address them.”
This is a great initiative, and adds a ton of accountability into the reporting process for these matters. I wonder if you could complain if your brand new headquarters has every amenity from a huge gym to a massive wellness centre (…what even?), but no daycare.
I have a feeling this mailing list will lead to the formation of castes inside the company and eventually lead to character assassination attempts and the harassment of “undesirables” or minority groups.
After what was revealed about Marissa Mayer “purging” males from Yahoo’s management ranks, and about the horrible behaviour of Uber’s management towards female employees, I have trust that both genders can misuse the list in such a way: Are you a caste of broken people (male or female) with a grudge on the other gender? A series of complaint letters targeted to some people of the other gender full of bogus claims will allow you to vent your spleen anonymously.
And this is the reason other companies have HR policies preventing such lists and have a policy to shut down such lists. But, you know, Silicon Valley thinks the entire world outside the Valley is always wrong and they are always right.
Edited 2017-05-23 22:42 UTC