A Facebook approach to work

2011FacebookVisitHEADLINE.jpg

2011FacebookVisitHEADLINE
Corporate Affiliates Visiting Fellows in front of the "Facebook Wall," Palo Alto November 2011
Photo credit: 
Denise Masumoto

Stepping into Facebook’s headquarters in Palo Alto, a first-time visitor might wonder how the company’s employees ever accomplish anything. Wide-open work, meeting, and lounge spaces replace the traditional cubicle-office environment.

Corporate Affiliates Visiting Fellows recently toured the Facebook facility—a former Hewlett Packard building—and learned about the company’s open and creative work culture.

As the fellows walked through the complex, Facebook employee Melissa Traham explained that the social media giant’s key work values include:

  • Open, collaborative teamwork
  • Transparency in meetings and projects
  • Trust to suggest and carry out ideas
  • Connectedness through social and special interest activities

Traham also showed the fellows an enclosed space—the “war room”—where bugs are worked out before Facebook launches a new feature. Otherwise all work, meeting, and lounge spaces are open and airy.

“They must be doing something right,” says Corporate Affiliates program manager Denise Masumoto.

Although Facebook has only resided at its current location for a few short years, it leaves its Palo Alto home sometime in 2012 for the old Sun Microsystems campus in nearby Menlo Park.

Through their visit, the fellows walked the halls of history in a young company continually moving forward.