Why Did I Leave Google Or, Why Did I Stay So Long?




  • Every Western CEO thinks she or he will be the first to be a successful Western brand in China and many try and launch a service there. The Chinese are used to this Western arrogance and welcome the foreigners. Many quarters and dollars later, the Western CEO leaves with some China experience and the Chinese partner keeps the IP, money, business… You cannot fight the nature of the beast, this is China. (View Highlight)
  • In a Corporation, the employee alignment is to the Corporations brand, not to the product (i.e. Google, not Gmail; Facebook, not Instagram). The product is a tool to advance the employees career, not a passion, mission or economic game changer. Being promoted has more impact on the individuals economic success than the product growth. (View Highlight)
  • There are people who are great for a stage of the company and later, do not have the right skills as the company grows. It is not their fault, it is reality. (View Highlight)
  • I learned the hard way that if another manager is recommending a great employee to hire, that they are probably trying to get rid of the employee since they cannot fire them. (View Highlight)
  • After the acquisition, we have an extremely long project that consumed many of our best engineers to align our data retention policies and tools to Google. I am not saying this is not important BUT this had zero value to our users (View Highlight)
  • Regardless of your performance (individually) or your product performance, you equity grows significantly so nothing you do has real economic impact on your family. (View Highlight)
  • feel that the risk reward model in Corp-Tech is broken due to ever rising stock prices and lack of personal impact on your returns. (View Highlight)
  • value transparency and feel that people should bring themselves to work but that also means a certain tolerance of people not saying something exactly as you would like them to or believing something you don’t (View Highlight)
  • the end of every day, I always ask myself “what did I do for our users today”. This simple exercise helps keep priorities straight. (View Highlight)
  • I think that the independent model is a must for acquisitions. No one buys technology, you buy a team and a way of doing things (View Highlight)
  • When you decide to sell a company, you need to be honest with yourself that this is the end of your era, and not pretend that you will be able to continue to build the company but with a different shareholders (View Highlight)