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How Google Works

Thursday, 02 October 2014 16:40

How does Google work? What makes one of the most recognizable companies in the world tick? Are there actual secrets behind this tech giant's success?

Hundreds descended upon the Toronto Hilton Hotel on Wednesday, October 1st to see if they could find out. It was a legion of suits hoping that some of the magic dust surrounding two of Google's brightest might land on their shoulders. I should point out I was happily there too.

Google Chair (and former CEO) Eric Schmidt and former head of products (but current adviser), Jonathan Rosenberg are two of the biggest names in innovation, the internet, and business savvy. The Empire Club of Canada, famous for its long lineage of powerful speakers, hosted the event to a full house.

At the heart of the event was a new book called "How Google Works".  The book is a business guide based on the experience these two men have had over the last decade. They argue that because we live in a consumer-based power structure in business, the onus is on companies like Google to create the most innovative and attractive products, to stay ahead of the curve - okay not rocket science, but I am biting. To do this, you need the right people. "Smart Creatives"; as they are known in the book. Those looking to expand their business horizons will lap up chapters like "Strategy - Your Plan is Wrong" and "The True Meaning of Consensus".

The biggest take away in this book is about the people who make Google happen. Both men had stories to tell about the wild early days of the company, giving colour to the Google story. The book is also about how Google strives to solve all the world’s problems by crunching data. The self driving cars you have been hearing so much about are a good example of this type of thinking.

Two of Google's most recognizable pioneers may have written a sexy page-turner on how to restructure your business, but it may have a few flaws. Some would argue it's a PR stunt amidst a steady flow of Google ridicule. It's possible it isn't unlike other business how-to books that you may have read before. And while there seems to be levels of respect for institutions like Government and Education, one gets the feeling like Google has some strong opinions on how to teach society to work for companies like itself.

Is it worth a read, heck yes, but be prepared for a lot of Google-speak that may vaguely resemble an idea you may have heard of before.

How Google Works is available now.


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