A recent survey suggests that a lot of Motorola Mobility employees will be thrilled at yesterday's news that their company is being bought by Google.
Motorola Mobility was spun off from its parent early this year, part of a wrenching retrenchment in the face of rising competition and a mobile market evolving with bewildering speed.
MORE ON GOOGLE'S MOTOROLA BUY: Google CEO Larry Page blogs on why he's buying Motorola Mobility
The survey of 600 employees at each company was undertaken by Glassdoor, an online jobs and career website, which polled members of its jobs-related social network.
Employees were asked to rate their companies overall, ranging from 5, very satisfied, to 1, very dissatisfied. The average rating for Motorola employees was 2.9. For Google, it was 3.9.
That gap yawned into a chasm when they were asked to rate their respective CEOs, Google's Larry Page and Motorola's Sanjay Jha. Page won a 97% approval rating; Jha, just 47%.
One Motorola employee wrote: "Much change has occurred since the era of Sanjay Jha and his management influence. Layoffs hit hard and deep over the past few years separating a lot of talent with many years of service."
"Either senior leadership should learn a new trick such as profit through growth and technical leadership, or step aside and hand the company over to new leadership," declared another employee.
But another commented more generally on the stress of working in an increasingly competitive industry where the stakes are high. "Motorola is undergoing great competition in every sector they're doing business in this economy. People are under greater stress about their job security," this employee wrote.
But working at Google had its own stress. "The company has grown so much that competition is greater thus limiting advancement," one Google employee wrote. Others feel their contribution to the company's success is obscured if not ignored. "Promotion by committee means it's harder to get recognized for an obscure project or brunt [brute?] work maintaining important stuff than for working on 'sexy' projects," an employee wrote.
It's a demanding environment and a demanding company. "Very fast pace and high performance oriented corporate culture," one employee observed. "Easy to get fired. Long hours and high work standards. Very team oriented, (not necessarily bad) but for people who value individualism, Google is not for you."
Yet Google got its highest score in "employee morale" with a 4.1 rating from employees. By contrast, Motorola got 2.8. It scored 3.9 ratings for "communication," "compensation & benefits" and "work/life balance."
By contrast, Motorola's scores for these same areas were: 2.8 for communication, 3.3 for compensation and 3.7 for work/life balance, the latter its highest ranking in the survey.
John Cox covers wireless networking and mobile computing for Network World.
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