How Google Works | Eric Schmidt

Summary of: How Google Works
By: Eric Schmidt

Introduction

Welcome to the summary of ‘How Google Works,’ a fascinating insight into the inner workings of one of the world’s most successful companies. This book, written by Google’s Eric Schmidt, dives into the factors that have driven the company’s unprecedented growth and impact. Central to Google’s success is its focus on hiring and nurturing smart creatives – individuals with a combination of technical expertise, business acumen, and creativity. In an era where the Internet dominates our lives, Google emphasizes the importance of creating innovative, superior products, rather than relying solely on marketing strategies. In this summary, we’ll explore how to hire and retain smart creatives, foster a company culture that promotes innovation, and devise the strategic foundation that allows a business to be agile and respond to a rapidly changing marketplace.

The Power of Innovation

The rise of technology over the past few decades has transformed our world completely. It has changed how businesses operate and interact with their customers. In this world, product development has become the focus of all companies. The internet has made consumers more aware, giving them more choices, and businesses have to provide the best possible products to attract and keep their customers.

Technological advancements have made it easier for companies to develop products that are not only cheaper but also of better quality. This is a result of the collaboration between smart creatives, a new breed of employee with a unique combination of technical expertise, business savvy, and creative sensibility. These problem-solving individuals push the boundaries of innovation and are the cornerstone of Google’s past and current success.

Google’s founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, trusted in the power of their product, their search engine algorithm, from the very beginning. They believed that if they created the best search engine possible, everything else would fall into place. This approach to business has proven to be successful and has made Google a global leader in technology.

Hiring Smart Creatives

The key to developing great products is having smart creatives. The following approach of Google to attract and retain such people is practical. Committees should be created to represent a company’s different viewpoints and roles while reviewing candidates. To assess their creativity, ask candidates about their interests and passions. Once hired, keep these intelligent and adaptable employees engaged by providing constant challenges to satisfy their restlessness and ambition.

Creating a Creative Company Culture

To attract smart creatives, companies must cultivate a culture that encourages creativity. This includes fostering easy interaction among colleagues, allowing free expression of ideas, and giving employees the freedom to make decisions independently. Defining company values is also important in creating an appealing culture. While these steps won’t discipline or motivate employees, they will attract the kind of people drawn to a certain company culture rather than a big paycheck. A culture that fosters intrinsic motivation and dedication in workers is key to creating a creative company culture like that found at Google.

Beyond Traditional Business Planning

Most CEOs believe that business plans are necessary, but traditional plans often lead to failure. To better prepare for unexpected challenges, CEOs should focus on building a strategic foundation rather than a static plan. Creating a foundation based on guiding principles enables companies to respond flexibly and innovatively. For example, Google’s strategic foundation focused on developing innovative products based on technical insights, achieving fast global growth through a platform approach, and maximizing openness. By establishing this foundation, Google was able to foster a culture of innovation and creativity that allowed smart creatives to solve unexpected problems.

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