Things Google Knows to Be True #7

Next in the my series on Google’s “10 Things We Know to Be True”:

#7 There’s always more information out there. Continue reading

Things Google Knows To Be True #4,5 & 6

Today’s post is a continuation of my previous series on Google’s “Ten Things We Know to Be True”. If you missed the first 3, here are the links:

1. Focus on the user and all else will follow.

2. It’s best to do one thing really, really well.

3. Fast is better than slow.

Now, for the next installment. I’ve grouped the next 3 together because, frankly, 4 and 5 are kind of dry and I couldn’t come up with anything particularly great to write about them. 6 is a beauty though, so read on! Continue reading

Google #2 Do 1 Thing Well

Blog # 2 in my series on Google’s Operating Philosophy – 10 Things We Know to Be True


“It’s best to do one thing really, really well.”

“We do search. With one of the world’s largest research groups focused exclusively on solving search problems, we know what we do well, and how we could do it better. Through continued iteration on difficult problems, we’ve been able to solve complex issues and provide continuous improvements to a service that already makes finding information a fast and seamless experience for millions of people. Our dedication to improving search helps us apply what we’ve learned to new products, like Gmail and Google Maps. Our hope is to bring the power of search to previously unexplored areas, and to help people access and use even more of the ever-expanding information in their lives.” Number1_Chaiwat

This is interesting because you might think that Google does more than just one thing. They do Google Earth, they have Android, Glass, Gmail and may other offerings.  However, they boil it down to finding new and better ways to do search. They believe that by continuing to solve search problems and doing it better, they can apply what they learn to other products to do them better too.  Google users trust that since Google search is so simple and effective that their other products will be too.

Image Courtesy of  Chaiwat

Consider other very successful companies that seem to do more than one thing.  Apple, for example, makes computers, phones, music players, and sells music online.  Do they agree that it’s best to do one thing?  I think Apple would probably say yes.  Apple challenges the status quo in everything they do.  They look for the simplest solution to every problem, which they will tell you, is usually the hardest one to find.  By doing this, they make digital technology accessible for the end user (remember her from Item 1 of Google’s philosophy).  Whether they buy phones, computers, mp3 players or online music, Apple customers trust that their products will be simple to use and elegant.

Another example I can think of is Honda.  Again, they seem to do many different things.  They make cars, motorcycles, generators, outboard motors and have even built a humanoid robot called Asimo. So what is Honda’s one thing.  A quick look at Honda’s website will tell you that Honda is built on Dreams. Well that is nice, but what does it mean?  Why are their customers so loyal to their products?  Further reading explains that Honda dreams about better ways to improve human mobility.  Asimo was a direct result of Honda research directed at learning how to help people with limited mobility.  In my opinion, this desire to improve human mobility has led Honda to design their products in a way that allows for a robust and repeatable manufacturing process better than anyone. As a result, their products perform better and longer than those of their competition.  Their customers are so loyal because they trust that their Honda product will, quite simply, work properly every time they go to use it.

What is the one thing you are really good at, and are you focused on improving it?

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

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