Companies are starting to realize just how important play is to the creative process and huge companies such as Google do lots of things to make sure their employees are not only happy but work at their hardest.
Google have a completely free food court and free vending machines around campus and is packed with games such as table tennis, table football and more. The idea is to give their employees a place to work but also a play they can relax and enjoy themselves whilst keeping everyone together. The workspaces are also created so that you are forced to sit with new people which is meant to get you sharing ideas as well as maintaining a healthy ‘out of work’ social life.
The amazing is that Google has created their workplace so that employees don’t have to leave; they have everything they need right there. They’re also encouraging employees to play as this is when they are most creative which also means problems solving is at an all-time high. Say you’re having an unproductive say and can’t get your head around something, you go off to get free food, sit down next to someone you don’t know and start talking to them. Next thing you know you are discussing ideas over a game of pool and suddenly the concept you were stuck on suddenly makes sense! It sounds silly but by allowing yourself to play and relax you forget what you were stressing about and by having a new perspective you’ve allowed yourself to work out what you were stuck on without even working.
I think that relaxation when trying to work is extremely important, for me especially when I get stressed I can’t think properly and I’m never happy with what I achieve when I come back to it. It’s always important for me to take a breather and do something I enjoy just to take my mind of work. There’s been many times where I’ve stopped working because I’ve come to a bit of a standstill and out of nowhere whilst I’m doing something completely unrelated an idea pops into my head and I jot it down on my phone so I don’t forget it.
Google aren’t the only company to adopt this idea of play, many other companies such as Apple have incorporated play in their workplace to maximize productivity and overall employee happiness and it seems to work extremely well.