Diversity within FSEs and OPs: A Lesson From Google Corp. and Google+

Adam Fish July 17, 2011

We have been dealing with cultural totalities—a single FSEs here and its single OPs there. Perhaps at an earlier point such holism and universalism was plausible. Closer examinations of each entity under the same banner provides evidence that each FSE and OP is likely an accumulation of numerous micro-communities. If we are going to explore the cultural diversity in the FSE-OP dyad we might want to think of each localized entity as a polymorphous system.

For example, as I explore more fully in a different blog, Google Inc. is doing two things that may give us reason to look more closely at the diversification, internal to their forms, of FSEs and OPs: 1) In-house, Google, Inc. encourages its employees to develop ERGs or firm-based affinity moieties; 2) the new social media platform Google+ gives users options for how to categorize their “friends” into select Circles. These two observations have implications for the relationship between Google’s FSE and its OP and more generally the internal integrity of analytical categories such as FSEs and OPs. The internal mechanism for FSE and OP development are subject to the hording and cliquey practices the workers and social media users.