As the CEO of Google since April of 2011, Larry Page has been instrumental in driving the company forward in more ways than one. In particular, his leadership style, philosophy, personal and organizational values, strengths, weaknesses and successes will be analysed and discussed herein. This will also be coupled with Google’s emphasis on culture and dynamics.
Brief CEO Background
Larry Page, originally the co-founder of Google, recently became CEO of the company, and led the business forward to achieving many important milestones, one of which was reaching the $50 billion revenue milestone, as of 2012 (Forbes, 2013). By identify customer trends and focussing on niche markets, Page has been able to pioneer creative innovation in the company to a greater extent, which has also caught the attention of many rival companies, one of which is Apple. However, Larry Page has been able to diversify into other areas of technology, including partnership with former Google CEO Eric Schmidt in robotic ventures, and co-founder Sergey Brin in the area of renewable energy; himself accumulating a net worth of $23 billion. Nevertheless, his drive to succeed has propelled the company to the forefront of the information technology sector, where Google has become the primary choice for many consumers.
Leadership Style and Philosophy
Often, the CEO of a company is seen as the leader of that particular company, in terms of a known figurehead in the business. In Google’s case, Larry Page possesses a form of leadership that enables employees to model similar behaviour in relation to creative innovation. Known as transformational leadership, the leader has an operational effect on the development of learning in others as part of the organization in a strategic sense (Bucic, Robinson, and Ramburuth, 2010).
As Larry Page focuses on creative innovation and fosters this outlook amongst employees, the same philosophy is replicated throughout the organization. This leadership style positively affects team cohesion, perceptions of learning, and team performance. In such an organic culture as Google’s, this is important to gaining momentum in the industry and increasing innovation and teamwork amongst employees.
Personal and Organizational Values
According to Larry Page, the reason for founding Google along with Sergey Brin was to turn large amounts of data into concise, organized information (Yates, 2013). This was initially to make the World Wide Web more accessible to users; however, it also posed an important function for academic cataloguing, which was usually a tedious process. This convenient service led to the founding of Google, which still remains a core focus of the company, as reflected by the organization’s values.
‘Do no Evil’ has become the motto for the company since its beginning, and Google has strived to accomplish its slogan. By providing many free and accessible products and services to its customers, the organization has been able to dominate its competitors for many years, and continues to do so. Google’s core values remain as focussed on its customers and its employees as since its founding, and Larry Page intends to keep it moving forward as long as his tenure remains as CEO.
CEO Values and Ethical Behaviour
Larry Page has remained heavily focussed on environmentally-friendly initiatives, particular in terms of renewable energy. This has led him into many ventures along with co-founder Sergey Brin, as aforementioned, outside of the business. However, these environmental values do hold significance for the influence in relation to the company’s ethical standards.
As reflected by the motto, ‘Do no Evil’, as mentioned before, Google has maintained a high standard of ethical behaviour, and has placed an important emphasis on such behaviour amongst its employees. Therefore, the company has been able to become a popular and highly sought-after company for both employees and customers.
Strengths and Weaknesses of CEO
Every CEO has their own list of strengths and weaknesses; however, Larry Page has three particular great strengths and three particular great weaknesses. These reflect both his values and his drive to succeed (Ingraham, 2013).
Firstly, Larry Page’s greatest strength is his unrelenting passion. His creativity helped Google to increase in profit figures and achieve milestones in years instead of decades. This unrelenting passion also inspires co-workers and employees to identify trends in the market and create new technologies that helped consumers and intrigued competitors into action.
Secondly, CEO Larry Page’s second strength was in his entrepreneurial abilities. Far from merely investing in his own company, Page was able to diversify his interests into renewable energy and space exploration, amongst other ventures, to continue to be and pursue the cutting edge of technology.
Thirdly, Larry Page’s strength lied in his strategic nature. He was able to efficiently and effectively determine which products the company was spending too much time and money on, and refocus on new innovations for the improvement of the organization for the long-term. He was also able to reorganize and reprioritize efforts into reducing turnaround time and leading the company to explore new opportunities to partner with clients to spur continuous improvement.
However, one of his greatest weaknesses was cutting costs and projects of Google that had significant customer interest for the short-term, but no viability for the company long-term. Although this ultimately was for the good of the company, the business did experience some negative feedback from customers for doing so.
In addition, the transformational leadership style of Larry Page also focussed on the company’s future more than on the company’s past success. As a result, most of the organizational effort has been on improving the newer products and services of the business, rather than continuing with the more stable products and services.
Lastly, the CEO Larry Page has been known for his criticism of other leading innovation companies, namely Apple. This has led to much corporate competition between the two companies, with extensive lawsuits and company rivals. However, this has led to changes in customer preferences between the two companies.
Larry Page’s decision-making prowess has been the most significant indicator in regards to his many successes, as shown by Google’s popularity in the technology landscape and the World Wide Web. One of his latest successful innovations, Google Now, was turned around in a little over six months, thanks to Larry Page’s initiative and drive to succeed (Ingraham, 2013).
This has led Google to become a significant player amongst the many technological giants, such as Apple and Amazon. However, Google’s creativity and innovation, as led by Larry Page, has been establishing its presence in the industry and the world. As he continues to reach company milestones and exceed expectations, both he and Google will be at the forefront of innovation for years to come.
There are four main influences that affect company dynamics, especially in relation to Google as a company: communication, collaboration, power and politics. Firstly, communication has opened up a new avenue for the company to move forward into this technological market, especially through the introduction of Gmail, Google Talk and Google Plus.
Secondly, collaboration has assisted in the fostering of company growth, particularly by encouraging an organic culture and an open atmosphere that trend towards contemporary rather than traditional corporate structures.
Thirdly, power has been emphasised in numbers, especially as Google seeks to utilize the best minds in the business to empower and lead its company forward in new technologies and constant innovation. This has also been one of the contributing factors to its popularity.
Finally, politics has been downplayed in the company in favour of prowess in technological terms. As a result, Google has been able to focus more on the company, its employees and its customers than other distracting factors.
In summary, Larry Page has been instrumental in driving the company forward, especially through his leadership style, philosophy, personal and organizational values, strengths, weaknesses and successes. Coupled with Google’s emphasis on culture and dynamics, both he and the company will continue to excel through creative, technological innovation for many years to come.
Bucic, T., Robinson, L., and Ramburuth, P. (2010). Effects of Leadership Style on Team Learning. Emerald 22(1), 200-210.
Forbes. (2013). Larry Page – Forbes. Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/profile/larry-page
Ingraham, N. (2013). How Larry Page is making Google Faster, More Focused, and More Successful. The Verge. Retrieved from: http://www.theverge.com/android/2013/1/3/3831714/larry-page-google-ceo-profile
Yates, V. (2013). Leader Values: Larry Page. LeaderValues. Retrieved from http://www.leader-values.com/leaders.php?lid=126