Sunday, February 15, 2009

How Google determines continued incubation of projects

Yesterday, The New York Times published an article and interview with Jeff Huber, senior vice president of engineering at Google, about how Google determines continued incubation of projects. As I wrote a month ago in the post on How Google makes money the equation to evaluate projects must be rather complex due to fact that users of free services build loyalty to and also visit other paid for or ad-financed websites. In the recent article in the NY Times the following parameters are presented:
- Popularity among users
- Ability to attract Google employees to develop them
- Solving a big enough problem
- Internal performance targets "objectives and key results"
If anyone knows what kind of internal performance targets Google uses, it would be very interesting to know. Thanks Jonas for recommending the article!

Further reading:
The future of Google - Marissa Mayer on Charlie Rose
How Google makes money


  1. Interesting article. Wonder how many other companies judge projects on their ability to attract employees to work on them in their "spare time".

    For a not so bus model related but still interesting peak of what it is to be inside Google check out the Techcrunch article:

    Why Google Employees Quit

    Judging from some of the comments in the thread they don't seem to use much performance targets at all (at least for the 20% projs) which can be a source of frustration for the people working on them.

  2. Thanks Richard, interesting indeed! It's probably very difficult to deliver on the hype. When recruiting the best people, with the promise of being the best place to work for, you have to deliver to the expectations or risk losing the ones who are not easily satisfied...