Facebook, Google, Yelp use leaflets in toilets and bathrooms to increase the efficiency of employees. According to Business Insider, other Silicon Valley firms also resort to such methods.
According to the publication, Google has become a pioneer of this practice. In 2006, the campaign began hanging flyers with information on code testing in the toilet stalls. To date, the corporation has changed its policy and is now posting announcements on the problems of workers. For example, in October 2019, signs appeared in booths with information about harassment and discrimination.
Facebook posts flyers with information about changes in their products and company news. In addition, they contain technical instructions and working recommendations.
In Yelp, ads in bathrooms and booths act as corporate media – newsletters about the work of other departments are published on newsletters. According to the head of this program at Yelp, Shyus Gupta, it has become a successful method of exchanging information between employees of different departments.
Sigrid Lur, a sociologist at the University of California at Berkeley, said that in this way, companies are introduced into their personal lives at a deeper level to achieve maximum efficiency.
In sociology there is the concept of an “ideal worker” – that is, one who is ready to work at any time when there is a need. In the technology industry, the idea of an ideal worker seems to be reaching its zenith. There is pressure in order to maximize the use of all working hours. Therefore, it does not surprise me that work overtakes employees even on the toilet and at other times when they should have a break.
PhD in Sociology, University of California, Berkeley
Journalists noted that not only technology firms, but also media companies resort to such practices. For example, the Group Nine holding (Thrillist, NowThis, The Dodo) publishes a newsletter about company events, vacancies, and other information.
Professor of Sociology, University of California, San Diego Mary Blair-Loy criticized employers’ initiative for posting ads. She noted that employees need a break to increase efficiency.
If employers put up advertisements with working materials in toilets, then I would regard this as a seizure of power and the development of a conveyor-type mentality. A cultural message, the essence of which is that the full dedication of employees is valued higher than their contribution to the work. But to work at the highest level, employees sometimes need to take a breath during the day.
Mary Blair Loy
Professor of Sociology, University of California, San Diego