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How Google Works

The rules for success in the Internet Century

A new book by Eric Schmidt & Jonathan Rosenberg, with Alan Eagle

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How Google Works

The rules for success in the Internet Century

A new book by Eric Schmidt & Jonathan Rosenberg, with Alan Eagle

HOW GOOGLE WORKS is an entertaining, page-turning primer containing lessons that Google Executive Chairman and ex-CEO Eric Schmidt and former SVP of Products Jonathan Rosenberg learned as they helped build the company.

 

In their new book, the authors explain how technology has shifted the balance of power from companies to consumers, and that the only way to succeed in this ever-changing landscape is to create superior products and attract a new breed of multifaceted employees whom Eric and Jonathan dub "smart creatives."

 

Covering topics including corporate culture, strategy, talent, decision-making, communication, innovation, and dealing with disruption, the authors illustrate management maxims with numerous insider anecdotes from Google’s history.

 

In an era when everything is speeding up, the best way for businesses to succeed is to attract smart-creative people and give them an environment where they can thrive at scale. HOW GOOGLE WORKS is a new book that explains how to do just that.

 
"An informative and creatively multilayered Google guidebook from the businessman's perspective."Kirkus
"An energized and exciting primer on creating a company and workforce prepared to meet an inspiring future."Publisher's Weekly
"Chairman Eric Schmidt and exec advisor Jonathan Rosenberg pull back the curtain to reveal how the company created its unique culture of workplace innovation"Fortune

The Authors

 

Eric SchmidtEric Schmidt

Eric served as Google’s CEO from 2001 to 2011. During that time he shepherded the company’s growth from a Silicon Valley start-up to a global technology leader that today has over $55 billion in annual revenues and offices in more than 40 countries. Eric is now Google’s executive chairman.

 

Jonathan RosenbergJonathan Rosenberg

Jonathan joined Google in 2002 and managed the design and development of the company’s consumer, advertiser, and partner products, including Search, Ads, Gmail, Android, Apps, and Chrome. He is currently an advisor to Google CEO Larry Page.

 

Alan EagleAlan Eagle

Alan Eagle has been a Director of Executive Communications at Google since joining the company in 2007. In that role, he led speechwriting and other communication activities for several Google executives, including Eric and Jonathan.

What's happening now

Jonathan Rosenberg
12 Mar 2016


Nice quote from How Google Works today #HowGoogleWorks in Forbes in an article that covers the remarkable fact that the leading presidential candidates of both parties rail against free trade. Remarkable because most mainstream economists agree international trade agreements are desirable.

The article rightly suggests "Railing against international trade agreements isn’t going to solve the problem. Nor does it lie in constructing more elaborate economic models. It lies in rethinking how business is being conducted. A good starting point is Albert Einstein’s insight: “The significant problems that we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them.”

The quote from HGW is:

“Traditional, MBA-style thinking,” as +Eric Schmidt and +Jonathan Rosenberg write in their book, How Google Works, “dictates that you build up a sustainable competitive advantage over rivals and then close the fortress and defend it with boiling oil and flaming arrows.” That doesn’t work anymore, because competitive advantages are less and less sustainable. The firm has to go on innovating, in order to be continuously successful.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2016/03/08/should-we-blame-trade-agreements-for-loss-of-jobs/#49ae17fe4320

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+24 | 3 comments | 1 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
03 Dec 2015


Interesting piece in the Economist:

“The pace of change is accelerating,” Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg of Google assert in their book “How Google Works”. For evidence look no further than the “unicorns”—highflying startups—which can win billion-dollar valuations within a year or two of coming into being. In a few years they can erode the profits of industries that took many decades to build.

http://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21679448-pace-business-really-getting-quicker-creed-speed

#howgoogleworks

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+27 | 0 comments | 20 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
16 Nov 2015


Books That Changed My Mind This Year: Fortune Staff Picks
12 must-read books, new and old

How Google Works, Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg (2014)
—Matt Heimer, senior editor
I’ve been involved in making hiring decisions for about a decade, and in my experience the process has always been very bureaucratic: The HR department gathers the resumes; the managers review them in a systematic way; the promising candidates are brought in for relatively grueling interviews with The Boss. So it was a liberating surprise to read Schmidt’s and Rosenberg’s chapters about the recruiting and hiring process at Google (now Alphabet) where Schmidt is executive chairman and Rosenberg is a senior advisor. Finding job candidates is essentially a crowdsourced task whose guiding ethos is the phrase, “Everyone knows someone great.” For current employees, producing a stream of hiring referrals is part of the job description—it’s factored into performance reviews. For the company, the process is a way to ensure that the cream of the crop of “smart creatives” keeps coming to the Googleplex, even as the company grows ever larger. There are dozens of reasons to turn to a book about Google for business insights, of course, but this is the revelation that made the biggest impression on me.

http://fortune.com/2015/11/15/best-books-staff-picks/
#howgoogleworks  

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+48 | 7 comments | 11 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
17 Oct 2015


I learned a great deal from Clay Christensen and particularly from "The Innovator's Dilemma" and I'm flattered to see "How Google Works" discussed in the same company as his ground breaking work.

http://onforb.es/1LPcTkP

We are here in the world described colorfully but accurately by Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg in How Google Works (2014), “Traditional, MBA-style thinking, dictates that you build up a sustainable competitive advantage over rivals and then close the fortress and defend it with boiling oil and flaming arrows.”

#howgoogleworks  

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+30 | 3 comments | 20 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
14 Jul 2015


"Sixty percent of the 500 executives surveyed said knowing a company's mission statement, and what it stands for, is one of the most important factors in a business decision. "

http://www.adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/60-execs-would-rather-work-firms-care-about-culture-165833

#howgoogleworks  

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+20 | 1 comments | 2 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
28 Apr 2015


"The smartest organizations are those that know how to aggregate and leverage collective intelligence."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/great-work-cultures/the-new-role-of-21st-cent_b_7155028.html

#howgoogleworks  

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+19 | 0 comments | 4 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
04 Apr 2015


6 books that will let you step inside the brilliant minds of business and tech leaders

"How Google Works" by +Eric Schmidt and +Jonathan Rosenberg and +Alan Eagle 

In this book, Google Executive Chairman and former CEO Eric Schmidt and former SVP of Products Jonathan Rosenberg explain what they learned as they helped build Google. They explain how technology has shifted the balance of power, and how one must adapt to that change.


Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/6-books-business-and-tech-books-to-read-2015-4#ixzz3WJi3o0E7

#howgoogleworks  

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+65 | 15 comments | 31 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
13 Mar 2015


My friend +Steve VonderHaar sent me this picture of How Google Works in Chinese which he saw while traveling.   Looks like it occupies a nice spot on the shelf!
#howgoogleworks  

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+2 | 1 comments | 3 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
05 Mar 2015


Jonathan Rosenberg
20 Feb 2015
http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/b536b692-a733-11e4-b6bd-00144feab7de.html#axzz3SFRyTeXc

Nice mention of Inspiration from "How Google Works" in this Interview:

Recruitment has been another management focus as the company rapidly expands. Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg’s book How Google Works is cited as a source of inspiration. “The emphasis Google put on hiring the right people, hiring people who are smarter than you and have skills that you don’t have; that’s what we’re trying to do here on a smaller scale.” 
#howgoogleworks  

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+16 | 0 comments | 3 shares
@ericschmidt
19 Dec 2014
RT @jjrosenberg: Appreciate being included on this list. Hope #HowGoogleWorks' 'unconventional approach' helps others succeed! http://t.co/…

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0 favourites | 19 retweets
Jonathan Rosenberg
18 Dec 2014


Appreciate the recognition from +theglobeandmail.com Hope some of the unconventional approaches we learned at Google help others succeed!

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/careers/management/the-top-business-books-of-2014/article22009299/

#HowGoogleWorks

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+47 | 10 comments | 26 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
12 Dec 2014


It’s critical to understand is that it wasn’t the company’s culture that drove a team to work through the weekend fixing an issue that had nothing to do with their day jobs. It was the people themselves. 

What the founders did so well was create a culture that attracted the kind of people who were naturally inclined to tackle tough problems, and provide them with an environment where they could thrive. Yes, this took place at Google. But with the right mission, passionate employees, and plenty of freedom and trust, it’s the kind of thing that could happen anywhere.

#HowGoogleWorks



Eric Schmidt originally shared:

Loved this article. What I remember being so impressed with at the time was how little senior management and traditional company hierarchy mattered in all of this. When Larry spotted poorly targeted AdWords ads, he didn’t have to route a message down the chain to the ads people, or wait for a task force to form (in fact, Jonathan and I weren’t even informed until the problem was already solved).

Instead, he knew he could just point out the issue and count on the right people to take care of it because they were as invested in providing a great user experience as he was. That kind of dedication can’t be taught – it comes from having a clear mission, hiring passionate people, and then providing them with the trust and resources they need to do what’s best for the company. #HowGoogleWorks

https://hbr.org/2014/12/the-google-way-of-attacking-problems

#google #culture #mission #passion #hiring

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+53 | 0 comments | 6 shares
@ericschmidt
09 Dec 2014
RT @GrandCentralPub: #HowGoogleWorks by @EricSchmidt is an @Amazon Gold Box Deal starting now and for the next few hours! http://t.co/LN4Cu…

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0 favourites | 11 retweets
Jonathan Rosenberg
09 Dec 2014


Business week asked what’s missing from their list of the 85 most disruptive ideas. I’d say the biggest thing is cloud computing. A core tenet of #HowGoogleWorks is how fundamentally the internet, mobile, and the cloud have changed the business landscape. By making near infinite storage and computing power and sophisticated tools available at a low cost, the cloud has paved the way for innovation like few things previously. 

I bet that when the 90th anniversary issue comes out, cloud computing will feature prominently on the list. What else do you think will be included in five years?

http://www.businessweek.com/features/85ideas/

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#disruption #innovation #businessweek #businessweek85

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+87 | 8 comments | 57 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
09 Dec 2014


We don't usually call these promotions out here, but this title is obviously absolutely worth it. One of the best business and management books of 2014, #HowGoogleWorks by +Jonathan Rosenberg and +Eric Schmidt, is a Gold Box Deal on Amazon right now!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/goldbox/ref=nav_cs_gb?gb_hero_f_102=p:1,c:283155,s:available

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+13 | 2 comments | 1 shares
@ericschmidt
05 Dec 2014
How to keep top talent? If you love them, let them go (elsewhere within the company). #HowGoogleWorks http://t.co/zDfUkEElzq

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140 favourites | 198 retweets
Jonathan Rosenberg
04 Dec 2014


All companies want to attract and retain top talent. But the reality is that smart, talented people learn quickly, get bored easily, and are bombarded by opportunities to go elsewhere. So how do you keep them? Tackling the kind of big challenges that make people feel proud and excited to come to work everyday is one important piece of the puzzle. The other is simpler – make it easy for people to move around within your organization. Doing so is a win-win. The smart creatives get to push themselves and learn something new, and you get to benefit from their energy and expertise.

At Google we encourage this in lots of ways. 20% projects, rotational programs, and the constant moves between teams that go on across the company are all designed to keep people engaged and help them grow. It’s a straightforward tool any company can use give great people a good reason to stick around.

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#howgoogleworks #talent #google

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+84 | 14 comments | 96 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
03 Dec 2014


Many entrepreneurs focus their energy on coming up with a brilliant idea, assuming that everything else will fall into place once they have that figured out. But what so many miss is that the idea is only the first step. What separates the good ideas that become great products from those that remain ideas is the team involved.

Ed Catmull nails this point in Creativity, Inc. when he says: “give a good idea to a mediocre team, and they will screw it up. Give a mediocre idea to a great team, and they will either fix it or come up with something better.” 

Big, clever ideas are important for inspiring and attracting the best people, but it’s the team you build that will truly determine your success.

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#HowGoogleWorks #google

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+61 | 3 comments | 28 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
02 Dec 2014


Pleased to see How Google Works featured on Amazon’s Secrets of Success holiday gift list. Sometimes all a budding entrepreneur needs is a little encouragement and some practical advice, and How Google Works is really written to provide both. To round out your entrepreneurial gift pack, I also recommend Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace’s “Creativity, Inc.” and Peter Thiel’s “Zero to One,” which are both good reads with unique perspectives on starting something new.

Any other books you’d give to a newly hatched entrepreneur to help them succeed?

#HowGoogleWorks #holidays #gifts

http://goo.gl/PlpZq5

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

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+26 | 2 comments | 10 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
27 Nov 2014


One of the core themes of How Google Works is the importance of great people. I can personally attest that the book itself simply wouldn’t have been possible without the help of a large number of them. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I wanted to take a moment to express my gratitude.

So many people had a hand in this book. Mentors like Bill Campbell, and Professor Susan Feigenbaum. Smart creatives like +Brian Rakowski +Clay Bavor +Keval Desai +Marissa Mayer and +Cathay Bi My loving and supportive family. And of course everyone who read it and offered their feedback. I feel privileged to have so many smart, talented people in my life and interested in my work, and can’t thank you enough for all that you do.

Happy Thanksgiving!

#HowGoogleWorks

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+57 | 7 comments | 8 shares
@ericschmidt
27 Nov 2014
The real authors of #HowGoogleWorks are all the great people who inspired us along the way. Thank you for all you do & Happy Thanksgiving!

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63 favourites | 45 retweets
@ericschmidt
26 Nov 2014
RT @jjrosenberg: Nice piece in the @NewYorker. Flattered to have #HowGoogleWorks mentioned with Sloan&Drucker! http://t.co/cfB2kesfgk http:…

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0 favourites | 68 retweets
Jonathan Rosenberg
25 Nov 2014


Thought-provoking piece from +The New Yorker  on the evolution of the business management book over the past half century. It’s beyond flattering to have How Google Works mentioned alongside important tomes like Sloan’s “My Years with General Motors,” and Drucker’s “Concept of the Corporation.” I’m as curious as the author whether the lessons +Eric Schmidt and +Alan Eagle and I learned at Google will still be applicable 50 years from now, or whether new technology and a changed landscape will require a wholly different way of doing things.

What’s your take? What do you think the next business management book on the shelf will say?

http://goo.gl/C4Jexz

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#HowGoogleWorks #google #business #management

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+103 | 11 comments | 98 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
24 Nov 2014


Google is famous for its launch and iterate approach to product development. The launch part is pretty straightforward; what’s more complicated is what happens next. Since you can’t afford to iterate on everything, how do you decide where to focus?

The natural tendency is to devote more resources to the products that appear to need some help – improving the user experience and investing in marketing to reach a broader audience. But at Google, we’ve found that to be exactly the wrong approach. Instead, the best thing to do is to find the products that are doing well on their own, and then fuel the fire with marketing and engineering resources.

If you’re interested in hearing more about this, listen in to my conversation with +VentureBeat’s What to Think podcast here: http://goo.gl/V6fgv0

www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#HowGoogleWorks #google

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+57 | 7 comments | 30 shares
Jonathan Rosenberg
21 Nov 2014


The best thing any company can do for itself is to hire smart people. But it’s also important to think about the composition of your company as a whole. Hiring too homogeneous a group can leave you open to blind spots, with important issues overlooked and valuable opportunities left unidentified. The best defense against this? Hire people from diverse backgrounds and make sure their voices are heard.

We work hard to do this at Google, but know that we aren’t where we want to be, particularly when it comes to women and minorities. It’s a problem you see throughout the working world, and one that’s particularly acute in the tech industry. There’s no shortage of smart, creative people of all different backgrounds out there with big ideas and the ability to become great technologists, and we’d like to help them on their path. That’s why I’m pleased to share that we’re donating all profits from How Google Works to organizations focused on improving access to computer science education for girls and minority youth including +Black Girls Code, +Girls Who Code, and Code 2040.


More thoughts on hiring at: www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#HowGoogleWorks #google #hiring #diversity



Eric Schmidt originally shared:

I’m pleased to share that we’re donating all profits from How Google Works to organizations focused on improving access to computer science education for girls and young minorities, including +Black Girls CODE  , +Girls Who Code  , and +CODE2040  .

The best thing any company can do for itself is hire smart people. But it’s also important to think about the composition of your company as a whole. Hiring too homogeneous a group can leave you open to blind spots, with important issues overlooked and valuable opportunities left unidentified. The best defense against this? Hire people from diverse backgrounds and make sure their voices are heard.

We work hard to do this at Google, but know that we aren’t where we want to be, particularly when it comes to women and minorities. It’s a problem you see throughout the working world, and one that’s particularly acute in the tech industry. There’s no shortage of smart, creative people of all different backgrounds out there with big ideas and the ability to become great technologists, and we’d like to help them on their path.

More thoughts on hiring at: www.HowGoogleWorks.net

#HowGoogleWorks #google #hiring #diversity

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+50 | 4 comments | 5 shares
@ericschmidt
21 Nov 2014
Best defense against business myopia? Diversity. Thrilled to donate all profits from #HowGoogleWorks to CS education for girls & minorities.

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118 favourites | 105 retweets
"The only way for businesses to consistently succeed is to attract the best smart creatives and create an environment where they can thrive at scale."
"Businesses should be built on a strong set of strategic principles, not an MBA-style plan that’s bound to fail."
"When considering candidates for a role, favor the ones with a track record of learning new things over the ones with a track record in that particular role."
"Think 10X, not 10%. Global scale is available to just about everyone. But too many people are stuck in the old, limited mindset."
"It’s very hard to completely fail when you think big, since you can always salvage something of value from a project with big goals."
 
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How Google Works - The rules for success in the Internet Century