Are Google Management Practices Worth Studying?

Larry Dignan asks “Is Google reinventing corporate management or just living off the fruits of one big breakthrough?” Well, I believe Google offers a great deal for managers to study – see our posts on Google management practices. But that is not the same as reinventing corporate management. Most companies have no way of just replacing their management system with a “Google management system” – they don’t have the managers to make it work, or the staff or the systems or maybe even the business… However there is plenty that can be learned and adopted. In, Google: Reinventing management?, Larry states:

For me, Google doesn’t have the track record to claim much of anything regarding management practices. In technology I look to Cisco Systems as a company to study. Cisco rode the dot-com boom, lived through the collapse and is in a great position for the next phase of the Internet buildout. All of that retooling happened on the fly with Cisco CEO John Chambers at the helm. We should let Google’s model ripen for a while and study Cisco’s management model in the meantime.

My advice, study Deming and Toyota and Ackoff and Christensen and Google and a whole group of leading management thinkers. And use the knowledge to create a management system that works in your organization. A good way to start: read these management books and read the blogs like: Lean Six Sigma Academy, Evolving Excellence, Lean Blog, Panta Rei, etc.. And apply what you can where you are. Don’t try to copy what one place does or expect some consultant install management into your organization.

Related: Google ManagementHow Google WorksGoogle Experiments Quickly and OftenMeeting Like Google

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