Google’s Operating Philosophy


Google is an amazing company.  If you “google” (you know you’re doing well when people use your brand as a verb) their operating philosophy, you will find a list of “Ten Things We Know to Be True”. The list succinctly states what Google’s all about.  I love it.

I like it so much I am going to do a series of Blogs discussing each of the “Ten Things”.  I’ll discuss what I like about each and hopefully get you to consider what is important to you and to your business.

Item #1

“Focus on the user and all else will follow.”

“Since the beginning, we’ve focused on providing the best user experience possible. Whether we’re designing a new Internet browser or a new tweak to the look of the homepage, we take great care to ensure that they will ultimately serve you, rather than our own internal goal or bottom line. Our homepage interface is clear and simple, and pages load instantly. Placement in search results is never sold to anyone, and advertising is not only clearly marked as such, it offers relevant content and is not distracting. And when we build new tools and applications, we believe they should work so well you don’t have to consider how they might have been designed differently.”

What is the message here?

You, the end user are important.  Google will work really hard to make  their products work so well that you won’t be thinking about how to make them better.  Giving you a great experience is more important than Google making more money.

That is really powerful stuff.  As the designer or provider of a product or service it is sometimes very difficult to see things from the point of view of the user.  We work very hard to put our product or service out there for our customers, how dare they complain or ask for us to do it better!  The thing is, the customer doesn’t care about how hard you work, nor should she.  The customer wants a great experience and they are giving you their money to get it.  No matter what, if a problem occurs, it’s not them, it’s you.  The more you can anticipate what will give them a great experience, and then deliver, the more money they’ll happily give you.

n.b. Google’s situation is unique in that their end-users don’t actually pay them directly.  Advertisers pay Google for ads based on the fact that so many users like and use their products.  Despite the fact that they don’t get paid by them, Google was smart enough to realize that the millions who use Google search for free are their real customers.  No users, no ads.

Next Post: It’s Best to Do One Thing Really, Really Well

About Mike Bonn: I offer Business Coaching Services and facilitate the unique LMI process to help individuals and organizations improve performance.  If you would like to contact me to discuss any of my blogs, or to learn more about my excellent services, give me a call at 613.743.5642 or send me an email mbonn@lmicanada.ca.

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3 thoughts on “Google’s Operating Philosophy

  1. So true Mike. I wish the end-user (not the buyer) was taken into consideration by some of the big corporate service providers such as ADP and benefits providers.

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