Toscana I.
May 28, Sunday
11:30 – 13:30
Budapest (CEST)

Breakthroughs and Blindspots of Big Tech in Teal

IEC Conference: 2023

Many “Big Tech” corporations attract engineers by prioritizing their employees’ well-being as well as productivity. Some have even adopted Teal cultures (LL) and practices (LR) for human-centered collaboration at scale. For example, groups that value psychological safety uncover more – and more diverse – perspectives when brainstorming and problem-solving.

Google’s engineering organization is arguably the world’s largest, most “Teal-ish” collective, embodying Laloux’s Teal principles of self-management, evolutionary purpose, and wholeness. We illustrate these aspects with a case study of Google’s approaches to hiring, collaboration, performance evaluation, and promotion. By applying an Integral lens, we also identify blindspots that arise when advanced cognitive intelligence is not matched by other lines of development. We discuss how that impacts Big Tech’s response to the societal-level challenges posed by social media, virtual reality, and artificial intelligence.


United States

As a senior software engineer at Google, Earl J. Wagner, PhD has a record of innovating in technology and personal development. He advanced artificial intelligence by enabling the Google Assistant to guide users through cooking recipes. His research in AI has been published at top venues, including AAAI and IUI, and led to two US patents. In over nine years leading Google’s program for Nonviolent Communication (NVC, aka Compassionate Communication), he has taught more than 3500 employees. As a long-time member of the Enneagram personality-type community, he served on the board of the International Enneagram Association and launched its online community, IEA Nine Points.

Earl holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from Northwestern University, an MS in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab, and a BA in Computer Science and Philosophy from University of California, Berkeley. He regularly meditates and practices NVC empathy (both to stay sane), and lives in Chicago, Illinois, USA.