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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Google Doodles would've never happened at P&G

Today Google paid tribute to Freddie Mercury's 65th birthday in what is becoming a very popular feature: The Google Doodle. Another great Doodle I remember is the tribute to Les Paul, where you could play a tune with strings on the Google logo. Coincidentally, I'm listening to an audiobook entitled "I'm Feeling Lucky: The Confessions of Google Employee Number 59." It's told by Doug Edwards, one of the first brand managers Google brought in, and how he had to adjust to Google's lack of corporate-ness, coming from decades of big corporation experience.

Also coincidentally, I had just finished the chapter where he talks about the first Google Doodles. The people at Google wanted to have fun with Thanksgiving, Election Day, Mothers Day, etc. by making fun things happen with Google logo. But Edwards fought it, saying it was taught in all marketing books that you don't mess with your brand equity. Fortunately, he lost, and the rest is Doodle history.

As I'm going through the book, it just reminded me of how frustrating the corporate world is. He talks about how he was taught in his corporate experience that ideas were things to be stomped out before they drained resources, and how Google was so much different. He also talks about how, in the corporate world, you only did what was in your job description, for fear of stepping on toes. Many of the things he talked about wanting to stop or implement from the old corporate world got turned back, for the better.

No, I'm not going to apply for a job at Google. I doubt they're perfect either. But this really goes to show how the corporate world is broken. I really feel there will be a revolution in the future where big corporations get disrupted. Smaller companies with better cultures will get more out of their people, making them more successful. Hopefully, I'll never need to return to the corporate world again.


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