Friday, March 05, 2010

Google's problem is their corporate philosophy

As a Google customer, I'm not happy with this approach ...
Two keys to Google’s success: “paranoia” and “relentless brutality” | Good Morning Silicon Valley
.... So how does Google maintain its pace and sense of urgency? Through a Shiva-like dance of constant creation and destruction performed with “relentless brutality and execution,” said Herlihy...
… We seek ubiquity and then pray for luck. We learn from bad decisions. If something is wrong, we kill it as soon as possible, take everybody out and move onto a different project as soon as possible.” And the process of regular and rigorous reviews extends to people as well as projects. “We measure people every 90 days,” Herlihy said. “We get 360-degree feedback on people every 180 days and that feedback is published to the whole company. People want reality. Ninety percent of the rewards end up going to 10 percent of the people...
Since 90% of the rewards go to 10% of the people and non-hit products "die" (or are abandoned) young, engineers leading products that are not quickly successful must leave the company, or abandon a slow project as quickly as possible, or stay and become demoralized.

The result I see is a profusion of half-build services that start well, then stall then are abandoned, and, years later, are killed. As someone who's used most of what Google has built, I'm not happy with their management style. Of course I'm not a typical user, but I can say that many of the companies I've disliked are dead now - or are living dead.

Fire Eric Schmidt. Now.

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