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Google's Product Development & Management Process Revealed

From Marissa Mayer via Evelyn Rodriguez. Download here>>

Thanks for taking notes, Evelyn!

Some highlights:

Small, Agile Engineering Teams
• 3-person units (like start-ups!)
• Unit is a project - they don't have departments
• Unit is co-located (sit next to each other) also with PM
• Engineers work on project for 3-4 months, then transition to next project
• Very fluid
• With 180 engineers, they can work on 60 projects - so they can afford to invest
on high-risk, high-return projects as well. (They call high-risk projects "Googlettes")
• Each project manager works with 9-10 people across units. For example, maybe a category such as "Enterprise Infrastructure"
• The technical lead in each unit of 3 is responsible for technical excellence of project.
• Documentation
- Very sparse, only what is needed in Product Requirements Document
(PRD)
- Eric Schmidt: "Late binding decision-making process"
- Evolves based on feedback
- Includes information on general market size, revenue in PRD but believe that "if you build something users use, there will be a way to make money"

• Large Projects
- Example: Enterprise Product - broken into logical modules, thus 4 units
(of 3 people) = 12 people
• Monetization teams
- Larry Page: "No such thing as a successful failure; if it is useful to people, later we can make revenue from it in a logical way."
- Focus on providing value to user first.
- Then create team to execute the "monetization" of most useful products/services.

• Marissa (speaker) was on team to monetize search
- Created AdWords, etc.

This is very, very interesting. Beeg trouble for moose and squirrel, er, Microsoft!

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