What It's Like to Eat Lunch at Google Headquarters

By Rick Bell Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Google HeadquartersBill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg would LOVE to eat Google’s lunch, but they were not invited today to Google’s California headquarters like I was. And Google’s not afraid of them anyway, because lunch at Google is just one of many meals they serve on a 24/7/366 basis.

Now, I’m not really a “big-company” guy. I love the size of Harvard Business Services. We have a really close group of 22 people. We all know each other and we have a terrific sense of camaraderie. When I started the company, 31 years ago, it was just me. I’ve enjoyed every level from two to three to 10 and I’m very comfortable with the team of 22 we have today.

Google, on the other hand, has about 22,000 people at its Mountain View, California headquarters. Today, I was one of them, there to eat lunch. Google does lunch better than any company in the history of capitalism. Maybe even in the history of lunch.

I’m not allowed to tell you too much, having signed the legally-binding super-restrictive non-disclosure agreement to enter the Google MultiPlex campus, but I can get away with telling you that you can have anything for lunch that you want, across the whole global spectrum of tastes, cuisines and diets. Multiple restaurants all around the campus, each with their own chef, menu and ambiance, feed and fulfill the appetites of the brightest and most ambitious team of people on earth, at least that’s the way they see it.

And let me make one thing perfectly clear. This is mostly organic, locally grown, healthy, fresh and delicious food, prepared with care to high standards. Everything was absolutely delicious.

I had a caesar salad with pita bread croutons, a slice of freshly baked Hawaiian pizza with fresh pineapple on it, some gluten-free pasta with meat sauce, grilled zucchini with an olive oil drip, a spicy Italian sausage and a draft ginger ale. Are you hungry yet?

I can tell you also, there are no lines at the cash register because there are no cash registers. Not even a checkout line. Nobody pays. Everyone eats whatever they want for free.

Ok, having said that I am not a big-company guy, I really wish our 22-person company could offer the same quality and variety of lunch options to our team. I have to admit that’s something a big company can do much better than a small company. The company that solves that problem for small companies will be very successful.

*Disclaimer*: Harvard Business Services, Inc. is neither a law firm nor an accounting firm and, even in cases where the author is an attorney, or a tax professional, nothing in this article constitutes legal or tax advice. This article provides general commentary on, and analysis of, the subject addressed. We strongly advise that you consult an attorney or tax professional to receive legal or tax guidance tailored to your specific circumstances. Any action taken or not taken based on this article is at your own risk. If an article cites or provides a link to third-party sources or websites, Harvard Business Services, Inc. is not responsible for and makes no representations regarding such source’s content or accuracy. Opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Harvard Business Services, Inc.

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