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Home > Blog > Gotta Love the Google Guys
Out of Our Minds
Friday, April 30, 2004 11:07 AM
Gotta Love the Google Guys
Anita Sharpe on Making a Difference

That faint humming/whirring noise we're all hearing in the distance is the sound of Wall Street spinning.

By now, most investment bankers have read the offering statement -- or 'Owner's Manual' -- written by Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin as they prepare for a most-unusual public offering: a public auction that turns the old-boy system on its head by getting more shares into the hands of the public and making quick-flip windfalls by favored investors difficult to impossible.

I want to highlight a few sections from their Owner's Manual, because what they have to say tracks beautifully with our mission at Worthwhile:

'We have emphasized an atmosphere of creativity and challenge. . .

'Expect us to add benefits rather than pare them down over time. We believe it is easy to be penny-wise and pound-foolish with respect to benefits that can save employees considerable time and improve their health and productivity.

'We believe strongly that in the long term, we will be better served -- as shareholders and in all other ways -- by a company that does good things for the world even if we forgo some short-term gains. This is an important aspect of our culture and is broadly shared within the company.'

Isn't this great? Time will tell if it has staying power, but so far, Google is worth at least $30 billion and the old guard is paying attention. Here's to the future of business and a very cool new model for success.


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Evelyn Rodriguez - 4/30/2004 10:33:34 PM
I love this letter. Before I read the SEC filing I posted on my blog why I would never take a company public (or even work as employee for a public company). However, I think Google may have opened the doors for a redefinition of what it means to be a public company. Bravo for setting the precedent!
kevin - 4/30/2004 12:21:39 PM
I also love this section, in which they talk about encouraging employees to innovate (and what's more motivating that being able to create?!!)

We will not hesitate to place major bets on promising new opportunities. We encourage our employees, in addition to their regular projects, to spend 20% of their time working on what they think will most benefit Google. This empowers them to be more creative and innovative. Many of our significant advances have happened in this manner. For example, AdSense for content and Google News were both prototyped in '20% time.' Most risky projects fizzle, often teaching us something. Others succeed and become attractive businesses.


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