Larry Page is an inventor, engeneer, and one of the founders of the famous company brand Google, the most popular search engine globally. He was born in 1973 in Michigan in the family of computer experts. His father was one of the famous computer pioneers, and his mother was a teacher of computer programming. During the years of studying at Stanford University, Larry Page got acquainted with Sergey Brin; together they created Google search engine, which is based on the popularity of pages. They believed that the most popular pages in any search are the most useful ones. After Page and Brin got enough money from their friends, family, and other investors, they founded Google Inc. in 1998. According to the statistics of 2013, it performs 5.9 billion searches per day. Nowadays, the company's headquarter is in Silicon Valley (California). Google has made Page and Brin billionaires.
In 2006, Google bought YouTube, the most popular website where users submit videos, for $1.65 billion.
According to Biography.com, "in September 2013, Page was ranked No. 13 on the "Forbes 400" list of the richest people in America". In addition, in the next month, "he was ranked No. 17 on Forbes' 2013 "Most Powerful People" list" (Biography.com., 2014). Now, Larry Page serves as Google's CEO and shares responsibility for Google's current operations with Sergey Brin (director of special projects for Google) and the company's executive chairman Eric Schmidt.
Page's Leadership Style
The Fortune Magazine presents the main leadership lessons based on Page's experience as Google's CEO. His leadership style is unique and reflects his own personal philosophy that is closely related to his cultural values. These are:
- Notice your ideas and develop even the craziest of them as some days these ideas may bring fruitful results. Larry Page confessed that the idea of creating Google search engine came to him in a dream about putting all web together and sorting pages by their popularity. It seemed crazy at first, but he managed to develop this idea with a good team of managers and performers that helped to implement it into reality.
- Build a team avoiding bureaucracy. Personal team helps to implement ideas practically when it is well-organized and acts quickly in making decisions.
- Be concise and quick. The Wall Street Journal reports that Larry Page encourages the members of his team to give 60-word updates about projects they develop on the regular basis during the day (Efrati, 2011). It is very useful as about 26,000 employees work for Google all around the world.
- Small goals and moves are significant. Google's strategy has been continuously developing from the very start. The experts at Google have been trying to improve the company's services including the usability of Gmail, Google search engine, Android OS, Adwords, Adsense, etc.
- Innovations. Larry Page and his team start up new projects that are very significant for the company's future. All team members try to succeed in future perspectives; they all think not only about their career goals, but also about the future of the company that is on the way to success on the market of information and advertising technologies.
- Persevere. In 2004, Google started the project Google book aimed at digitalization of books via scanning. Since then, many books would have been scanned to help all those who are interested in reading and researching print publications.
Personal and Organizational Values
These lessons from Google's CEO Larry Page reflect his desire to develop the company and improve its services to compete with other players on digital market. Larry Page is a strong and well-organized personality who has managed to create a good team of managers and performers who stand one for one in the work process. However, in reference to his colleague Levy, Fortune Magazine (2011) suggests Page to get closer to people and speak more in public: "He needs to communicate more, whether it's to the media, to Google's partners and to others" so that to express the ideas to the wider circle of experts and team members.
Larry Page's values encourage his employees for teamwork so that to help he company to succeed and implement plans into practice. He believes that the quick response to the current needs is the most important thing in practical implementation of ideas. However, it should be pointed out that Larry Page had a great influenced on commercialization of Google search engine as nowadays Google Adwords and Adsense systems are aimed at collecting personal data of users related to their searches that are used practically for commercial use to advertise products.
Larry Page's Strengths and Weaknesses
Larry Page's leadership style has both strengths and weaknesses
- Good response to the development of new ideas and innovations.
- Good communication with partners, team of managers and employees, setting clear tasks for them, and encouraging them to be concise when implementing ideas into practice.
- Developing even the craziest ideas that are suddenly coming to mind. For example, Larry Page explains the way of creating Google Maps Street View that helps anyone to see how streets look like in the following way: "I had the camera in my car and took a bunch of videos" (Youtube, 2009). That influenced the creation of the developed panorama street views that are now used in many countries of the world. Street views on Google are photographed by volunteers and then reworked and digitalized on web.
- Lack of communication with press and TV.
- Lack of desire to speak in public.
- Commercializing Google Search Engine via Adsense and Adwords instruments that allows scanning user's personal data and using them for commercial purposes.
Leaders success depends on many factors of his/her everyday life and influence their behavior. In my opinion, the most important of Larry Page's qualities is being open-minded to innovations that helps the whole team to move forward and be open to new challenges. CEO should be responsible for the development of new strategies, setting goals, and organizing work of a team in a proper way. Good response to innovations is very important for development projects. Collaboration inside the group of team members is crucial as it presents a dynamic structure that helps the company to move forward. Being decisive and responsible is essential for CEOs and top managers as well as ordinary performers. All of them should be informed about the key steps and methods of achieving goals. Lack of information may easily cause misunderstanding inside the team and lead to the major communicative problems.
When analyzing Larry Page's leadership style, it should be emphasized that he is a leader who cares about the entire team and encourages them to work for the fruitful results. This is explained by an example of how Page treats his partners and managers. Some of them are rich enough by now. However, they are ready to work in Page's team more and more as they understand that they are needed and valued there. It is a very important reason of Google's success.