Thursday, 15 April 2010

Google CEO's Fireside Chat at Google Atmosphere

A good insight into Google's ways of working as well as their priorities over the next few years was given by Eric Schmidt's Fireside Chat at the CIO event held in London.
Applications are not full replacement for the incumbents - Google's goal is to get to 80% functionality. Google Apps has 2 million enterprise customers!
Schmidt says that what is important now is to get the mobile architecture right. Single most interesting development is the arrival of HTML5. Really important for browser development.
Chrome and Chrome OS with 2 second boot time. Platform at every level.

He was asked for a thumbnail SWOT on Google:
Strength (?)

  • We make lots of mistakes but we admit them.


  • As Google becomes middle aged it is harder and harder to do completely new things.
  • Every government has some group busy trying to figure what we are up to - information is power - disrupting industries.
  • Most large companies have cooperation as well as being competitors with Google.

Schmidt ended with the following pearls:

  • Most important aspect of leadership in the modern age has to do with curiosity - most people "my" age don't ask the fundamental questions. Challenge every single assumption. Employees will respect you if you are on top of the details.
  • Treat employees as if they are intelligent - ask them a question rather than telling them what to do.
  • Collaboration does not mean by consensus - collaboration means that we sit in rooms until the best idea around, everyone agrees on that idea and that is what we do.
  • There are many smart people in your organisation - try to find them and try to encourage them.

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