Google’s Greatest Innovation May Be Its Management Practice

Page and Schmidt

Page and Schmidt

Here is a brief excerpt from an article by Bruce Nussbaum for Fast Company magazine. To read the complete article, check out others, obtain subscription information, and sign up for email alerts, please click here.
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The announcement of Eric Schmidt moving aside as Google CEO to let cofounder Larry Page take over is a “teaching moment” for CEOs of all kinds of companies. For a crucial decade in its growth, Google was led not by a single CEO, but by a team that gave it immense strategic and management strength. Google has taught us all a lot about search, maps, apps, and lots of other things, but it may be that the most important and overlooked lesson is in innovation management. Why? Google is a pioneer in what I call B-I Leadership–Bi-Generational, Boomer, Gen-X, Gen-Y management.

We all know by now that we live in an age of sharp technological and cultural bifurcation. There has been so much change so quickly that Boomers are immigrants to a world that Gen X and Yers are born into. The way people in their teens and 20s go about their lives–their platforms, their interactions, their values, their aspirations–are vastly different from their parents and grandparents. In addition, the acceleration and multiplicity of change is producing a world of extraordinary complexity. We know this.

Big established corporations have been struggling with these new developments for over a decade and many have made big strides in changing their business models to accommodate them. Open sourcing, social media platforms, new products and services, even new HR practices for new hires are examples. We know this too.

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To read the complete article, please click here.

Bruce Nussbaum blogs, tweets, and writes on innovation, design thinking, and creativity. The former assistant managing editor for BusinessWeek is a Professor of Innovation and Design at Parsons The New School for Design. He is founder of the Innovation & Design online channel; founder of IN: Inside Innovation, a quarterly innovation supplement. His latest book is Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire, published by HarperBusiness (2013).

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