A Letter from Google CEO

Velocity, execution and focus

Sergey and I founded Google because we believed that building a great search experience would improve people’s lives and, hopefully, the world. And in the decade-plus that’s followed, we’ve been constantly delighted by the ways in which people have used our technology—such as making an artificial limb using old designs discovered online.

But we’re always impatient to do better for our users. Excellence matters, and technology advances so fast that the potential for improvement is tremendous. So, since becoming CEO again, I’ve pushed hard to increase our velocity, improve our execution, and focus on the big bets that will make a difference in the world. Google is a large company now, but we will achieve more, and do it faster, if we approach life with the passion and soul of a start-up.

Last April, I began by reorganizing the management team around our core products to improve responsibility and accountability across Google. I also kicked off a big clean-up. Google has so many opportunities that, unless we make some hard choices, we end up spreading ourselves too thin and don’t have the impact we want. So we have closed or combined over 30 products, including projects like Knol and Sidewiki. In addition, we we gave many of our products, such as Google Search, a visual refresh, and they now have a cleaner, more consistent, and beautiful look.

Continue reading : http://investor.google.com/corporate/2012/ceo-letter.html

 

Ex-Google employee says Google+ has ruined the company

My last three months working for Google was a whirlwind of desperation,” wrote Whittaker, who headed an engineering team for social network Google+. “The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus.”

Whittaker, who joined Google in 2009 and left last month, described a corporate culture clearly divided into two eras: “Before Google+,” and “After.”

Google  once gave its engineers the time and resources to be creative. That experimental approach yielded several home-run hits like Chrome and Gmail. But Google fell behind in one key area: competing with Facebook. That turned into corporate priority No. 1 when Larry Page took over as the company’s CEO. “Social” became Google’s battle cry, and anything that didn’t support Google+ was viewed as a distraction.

Whittaker is not the first ex-Googler to express that line of criticism. Several high-level employees have left after complaining that the “start-up spirit” of Google has been replaced by a more mature but staid culture focused on the bottom line.