Google in the Enterprise: Squeezing Through the Revolving Door
When I saw the Tech Republic
article, "The three factors keeping Google from a full-scale enterprise assault," I first thought of sharing it with +Robert E. del Sol
, because helping businesses build their operations around Google's apps has been his
business for several years running. But then I thought this article really ought to be shared with the entire erstwhile SynaptIQ+ gang, because each of us brings to the party such diverse experiences and talents that, collectively, we can arrive at a more complete description of the whole elephant than any of us, standing alone, possibly could: a horn-like tusk, a snake-like trunk, a leaf-like ear, four tree-stump legs, a rope-like tail etc. So let me tag +Shaker Cherukuri
, who has worked extensively in and consulted for many large corporate enterprises, +Meg Tufano
who lives in the future and depends upon Google's services to remain there, +David Amerland
who climbed to the peak of the corporate infrastructure then leapt, figuratively, out the window so that he could soar even higher on the updraft of his expansive global social network. As for me, in a prior life I spent over two decades alternating between academic to commercial enterprises integrating Macs with Windows, then learning how to construct and administer large scale data storage networks before taking my current residence as the fool on the hill.
Then, I thought, why not just share this with everyone? If anyone finds it interesting, great! If not, she or he can ignore it. The more diverse and distinct perspectives that may be brought to witness, the more complete and more accurate the description will invariably become. +Gideon Rosenblatt
once upon a time worked at Microsoft but has since moved on to become a, no the,
sage visionary regarding good business. And +Adam Johnson
, who has retreated from Google+ to devote more time to the establishment of his recycling concern, has such a clear-eyed view of these kinds of matters, that he is someone whose opinion and insight I alway take seriously. Google the Corporation
Global corporate conglomerates operate today in the best of times and the worst of times. Never have profits been greater. Never has the future been more uncertain. In many ways these behemoths have grown into monstrosities that serve no human purpose whatsoever and leave in their wake a legacy of destruction and devastation. Yet business is one human endeavor that holds out the possibility of everybody "winning." In other words, in a world where too often people have been pitted against other people so that victory for one side comes at the expense of loss for the other, business promises something better. Political elections produce winners and losers. Either the plaintiff or the defendant prevails in the courtroom. But business, when conducted properly, holds out the possibility that I get what I want in exchange for you getting what you want. Satisfying the customer is as central a part of the business ethos as generating a profit.
So where does Google, along with its many apps and services — ranging from the Drive suite of apps to Hangouts, to Ad Sense, to the Google+ network —fit into this narrative? Clearly Google competes against a deeply entrenched Microsoft. Apple has all the ingredients to launch an assault on the enterprise market were it inclined to do so, but I think Apple sees itself too much as a jeweler, an exquisite artist who makes incredibly beautiful, shiny electronic baubles, not the nuts and bolts that tie everything together. So Google, mostly, competes against Microsoft for access to the mindscape of the corporate overlords; even while Microsoft struggles to recover from its ugly heritage of monopoly which left it peculiarly out of touch with its customers.
Will global corporations still be around 100 years from now? Or have they become dinosaurs awaiting the asteroid of their own manufacture? And where, if anywhere, does Google fit in?
I suspect that Google is experiencing difficulty penetrating into the corporation because so many executives are clinging to a nostalgic past that is, well, past. They yearn for a bygone era where command and control allowed them to dictate what they make and what they sell by fiat. Take it or leave it. The only competition they faced in this bygone era came from other dinosaurs roaming the prairie. But today its the fleas that are more dangerous. Fleas that swarm and bite and harass. Little guys. Entrepreneurs. Inventors. Bloggers.
I have a suspicion that if the global corporations can somehow be saved from extinction, indeed if they are even worthy of being saved, is in some unclearly defined way symbolically linked to the acceptance of the Google suite and the new way of engaging in business that this represents. Oh it's not the apps that are revolutionary. No, what is so revolutionary is the entire ecosystem within which the apps operate. Those who want to preserve the old regime of top-down domination instinctively, if not quite consciously, recognize that this new order, this new framework, is very dangerous to the old way of doing things they have desperately resolved to preserve.
This resistance to change, I fear, is what Google is really up against. But I, unlike Rob, have no vested interest whether or not Google chromebooks populate row after row of cubicles instead of the array of PCs that sit there nowadays. However I and you and every living creature on this planet do hold a vested interest in maintaining life on planet earth. I wonder whether the people who work in the corporate environment can actually change their workplace and their culture and the entire understanding of what they are actually doing and actually trying to accomplish before, like Dante, they drag civilization through the Inferno, then through Purgatory, before anybody can entertain any hope whatsoever of ever reaching Paradise?
So there we have it. I have just confirmed that I am indeed the fool on the hill. Please Rob, please rescue me from these ravings. Please find some way to make sense of this so that it may be translated into a practical and effective course of action.Links:
The Tech Republic
article, "The three factors keeping Google from a full-scale enterprise assault" by Conner Forrest, which precipitated these ravings may be read in full at http://goo.gl/9ZWj5Z
The Beatles song "The Fool on the Hill," clipped from their feature length film, The Magical Mystery Tour,
may be enjoyed at http://youtu.be/EDtK7xUIDxk
And if you happen to Google "the corporation," as I subliminally suggested, more likely than not you will receive this link as your top hit: http://www.thecorporation.com/
. It's a spellbinding documentary that everyone should watch and think about.
A shortened link to this post is http://goo.gl/gx2NPd
Thank you for taking the time to read this. #google #business #corporations