Nobody At Google Understands Everything At Google
This morning, Google Fellow Amit Singhal participated in a keynote interview with Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman at SMX London. The whole thing was liveblogged at Search Engine Land, the conference’s sister site.
I’ve been picking apart some of the things Singhal talked about throughout the day. Here’s the rest so far:
There was a pretty interesting part in which Singhal talked a little about how the company’s divisions work, with nobody really understanding everything the company is doing. Here’s the relevant snippet from Daniel Waisberg’s liveblogged account linked to above:
Chris asks: with the scope that Google have reached, is there anyone that still knows all of Google? Amit says that there are senior executives that each can understand very well their own “entities” such as Search, Advertising, and other big groups, but no one understands everything.
Given all that Google does, I can hardly imagine that anyone could understand everything. The search engine alone gets over 500 changes a year, as well as 20,000 experiments. Then you have everything else. Everything that encompasses Google Apps, Google+, Google Glasses, Driverless cars, and oh so much more.
To get an idea of how much stuff Google really has, just look at this List of Google Products on Wikipedia. It’s big, and I don’t even think it’s complete.
It’s really interesting, however, that a company can have such a substantial impact on so many people’s day to day lives, without anyone really understanding every element of that company. It’s kind of scary actually.