NeoGAFs Kent Brockman
In an interview, Valve employees provide insight into the reasons behind the company's infrequent release schedule for video games.
Recently, the YouTube channel People Make Games delved into the inner workings of Valve through interviews with former and current employees. The video highlights the unique working environment at Valve, which allows for ad-hoc team formation through the use of wheeled desks. However, this approach has also led to issues, with some employees comparing the workplace to the chaos and lack of structure in William Golding's novel The Lord of the Flies.
One of the key issues raised in the video is the use of stack ranking, a system in which employees are evaluated and ranked by their peers, with these rankings determining salary increases for the following year. Without clear guidelines or oversight, this process has led to negative effects on employee behavior and morale. Valve employees also highlighted a significant lack of diversity within the company, pointing to the flat organizational structure as a contributing factor. While the videogame industry as a whole struggle with diversity, the homogeneity at Valve is particularly striking, with the majority of employees being white and male.
During the interview, Valve employees also provided several examples to illustrate how the flat organizational structure of the company is a significant contributing factor to the majority of the problems currently being faced. They emphasized that the lack of a clear hierarchy and defined roles within the company has led to difficulty in decision-making and a lack of accountability, resulting in various issues, including the limited number of games released by the company. Valve Corporation, should most definitely listen to its employees, and make changes that they feel are appropriate. After all, they are the experts in their field, and they know what the company needs in order to improve.