5 steps of Google’s successful journey from Startup to $600 Billion Giant in < 20 years
“The rise of Google is proof that there is a place for something that solves problems that people face every day – by having instant access to information”. Eric Schmidt, x-CEO
Topics: What’s the BiG IDEA? Compromise, Get Help, cool Culture, Take a Chance, Google Quotes
If you’re an entrepreneur looking to get rich, then perhaps the best people to learn from would be the most successful founders of Google, Sergey Brin & Larry Page.
Modest Beginning They started out as graduate students at Stanford University, where they began work on Google. Now they have become the owners of one of the largest & successful internet conglomerates in the world, worth more than $600 billion. So how did they do it? Here’s how.
1. Start with a BiG IDEA . . .
even if something similar already exists. It’s not like Google was the first Search Engine. It’s just that the other search engines weren’t very good. The Google founders had big ideas. The first was to search the web with a “ranking system” used by academics to rate academic journals. The idea came naturally to them, given that they are the sons of professors. Their other idea was to base the search results on as pure a ranking system as possible, one that wasn’t tainted by the need to generate money that comes with every business. They believed providing a “pure” ranking system would make the results more trust-worthy and encourage visitors to come back.
Example: Google isn’t the only company that has been successful in an established industry that could use improvements. When billion-dollar Essential Oils company doTERRA launched, there were already companies offering essential oils, but it was able to bring the use of essential oils from the fringes into the mainstream.
2. Get Help from the “experienced” . . .
when needed. Page & Brin hired Eric Schmidt in 2001 to — in their own words — basically offer experience company management. The company went public in 2004, with the company being run by the three men. Most of the Vice-Presidents would report to Schmidt, leaving Page to focus on creating new products & services – while Brin also worked on development and securing new partnerships with other companies. Schmidt would help the entrepreneurs for 10 years before he felt Page was ready to become CEO in 2011.
3. Take a Chance . . .
because you never know what the future will bring. Brin & Page went public with the company in 2004, saying that it would be unconventional, that they were willing to forego short-term success for long-term growth. This was evidenced by some deals that were seen as bad at the time, but have become huge successes.
YouTube acquisition in 2006, seemed like a high risk at the time and took a long time to justify its $1.6 billion price tag. Now the video sharing site brings in more than $10 billion annually and forms the heart of Google’s TV service.
Other Risks. Sometimes the team invests in an “far-out” project that could take years to become profitable. Sometimes they invest in projects that become flops – in time – but filled an important niche. Google Glass wasn’t a big hit with the public, but it has become essential to certain industries and inspired other augmented reality glasses.
Exploring new Opportunities. The Google team are willing to take on a long-term opportunity – even if it can cost them in the short term. It’s given the company some major hits — as well as a few misses here & there. While the stock price of Google has been hit by these speculative bets, no one can deny that Page & Brin have stuck to their initial promise of creating a company that looks at the future and determines what it’s customers will need.
4. Compromise when needed . . .
even with a “lofty” goal. Brin & Page believed that providing high-quality information to the world for free was their responsibility. By 2000, it was obvious that Google was never going to be big or profitable with simple, pure ratings. The boys had to devise a way to generate Ad revenue – without compromising the results of searches.
Revenue thru Paid Listings were their solution – that you can see alongside the search results in Google. The idea revolutionized the advertising industry. The Ads were relevant and they were charged on a per-click basis. This move allowed Google to keep the primary search results “free” of paid listing – that users wanted no part of – although the decision did also get Google into some legal hot water. The company was litigated by GoTo.com, which said the idea for an auction-based pay-per-click advertising model was created by its team. The lawsuit was settled and GoTo.com was later bought out by Yahoo, once one of Google’s biggest rivals.
5. Culture is important . . .
and goes beyond “free food”. The main HR executive of Google also serves as the CCO (Chief Culture Officer) – who basically ensures that Google lives up to their credo of “Don’t be evil.” Former executives of the company have praised Google for plenty of things, including being progressive — at least by the standards of Silicon Valley — and promoting female executives, along with their ongoing series of programs & lectures offered at the Googleplex headquarters.
Plentitude of Perks. Another thing the company has been praised for is its policy of offering free food, massages, hair cuts, car washes & many other perks. Combine the culture of the company with its near-infinite resources and it’s hardly surprising at all some 2.5 million people send in their resumes annually.
“The reason that Google was such a success is because they were the first ones to take advantage of the self-organizing properties of the web. It’s in the developmental power of entrepreneurship, the ethical power of democracy”.
“When you make a decision, you need facts at your fingertips. If they’re all in Google, you can make the right decision on the spur of the moment”.
“Today it’s a world of multiple screens, smart displays. At Google, we ask how to bring together something seamless, beautiful & intuitive across all these screens”.
“There’s a difference between being able to make long distance phone calls cheaper on the Internet and walking around in a foreign country with a Smart-Phone – where you can have all of Google in your at the tip of your fingers”.
“My job as one of the leaders is to make sure everybody in the company has great opportunities, and that they feel they’re having a meaningful impact and are contributing to the good of society. As a world, we’re doing a better job of that. My goal is for Google to lead, not follow that”. Larry Page
“If you can make something big when young, it will carry you thru life. Look at all the big startups like Microsoft, Apple, Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. They were all started by younger people – who saw something of unseen value. You’ll know it for sure – when you are successful”.
“My mission at Google is to develop natural language understanding with a team – in collaboration with other researchers”. Sergey Brin
“Google Search is the most important applications ever on the Web. People accessed everything through a browser, and for us it was important for making sure we had an option there. Brin & Page
Comment: Let everyone know what you think of Google.
from Entrepreneur.com 12 May 17 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
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