Google Gear: All together now

Before we were 11,000+ employees, the entire sales organization used to come together every January for a conference in San Francisco. 2005’s theme was “base camp” because although things were going well, we had clearly only begun the climb to the summit. While I’m usually dismissive of corporate metaphor this was a reasonable picture to paint and indicative of what you hear from all corners of Google — we’ve got a big project and it’s a long journey.

Given the theme I had to chuckle a bit when Opus One started flowing at a dinner one evening (paid for personally by some folks, not the company dime). I don’t think you usually have $125 bottles of wine at base camp, but hey, i guess a little celebration isn’t out of the question.

Google Gear: Stealth Mobile

A lowkey mobile team shirt that was distributed summer 2006. See the Google balls on the phone screen. Subtle, eh? Maybe there’s something on the back of the t, but i don’t recall. This is a nice one because it’s a ringer shirt w/o following the normal “white t, dark rings” format.

Google Gear: YouTube Fleeced

YouTubers didn’t know what quite to expect at last month’s first local TGIF (the end of week all-hands meetings that Google runs). Turns out it followed the standard Google style – founders give update, note accomplishments of week, open the floor for Q&A – just sub in Chad and Steve for Larry and Sergey.

Everyone then learned of another periodic TGIF tradition – the mad rush to get some new t-shirt or other garment being distributed. This time it was a lightweight fleece pullover in red, green or blue.

Google Gear: An Army in Primary Colors

Continuing the “Google Gear associated with CES” stories, here’s a long sleeve t-shirt that us booth babes, err staffers, were given to wear. They came in red, blue, green and yellow, each corresponding to a specific section — mobile, search, community and, uh, hmm, maybe media, i don’t really remember.

Google traditionally doesn’t do the “big booth thing” and I was kinda surprised by our presence here. It’s probably because we displayed at a Digital Life conference in NYC and there was some sunk cost is getting the booth built. Anyway, it was neat with giant Lego pieces.

Google Gear: Packin’ Heat

From Larry Page’s 2006 CES Keynote comes the Google Pack Fanny Pack. Get it – it’s literally a pack. And it promotes Google Pack.

Some might insist this is a shoulder bag or maybe even a “rucksack.” Don’t kid yourself, it’s a fanny pack. You wear this and you might as well strap on the sandals and socks too.

I believe it came stuffed with a small wooden puzzle and maybe some other swag.

Google Gear: Keep movin’ folks, nothing special here

While some of my garments have stories, others tell no tales. These two shirts were just random Google logo t’s that came to me via the T-Shirt cabinet — a magical place on campus periodically filled with random gear for Googlers. This mechanism has been the discussion of many email threads about proper etiquette and efficiency for optimal t-shirt distribution.

Google Gear: The IPO Hat?

Every summer Google has a Family Picnic — it’s like an outdoor version of our Holiday Party except kid friendly – lots of activities, food, etc.

In 2004 the annual picnic was coincidentally just after our IPO which lead some reporters to believe it was a celebration tied to the event. Not true — to most of us the IPO was a pretty cool day, but not something to celebrate. We just wanted to get back to work — I mean there were so many news crews around, more than I’d ever seen without the chalk outline of a crime scene.

Oh yeah, and this hat – they gave out hats at the picnic 🙂

Google Gear: Always looking for talent

This particular one says “talent scout” on the back, simultaneously thanking me for referring many job applicants to google and also making the shirt embarrassingly unwearable.

We famously get hundreds of thousands of resumes a month but still we’re hungry for new recruits. As a product manager helping to grow the team is a high priority – # interviews and # referrals are factored into our performance scores. There’s also a small monetary incentive if your referral gets hired but given the rejection rate i think this bonus is likely 1/10th of what it actually should be. I’ve gotten two people hired with well over 50 referrals.

So if you want to work here just check out our Jobs page and let me know.